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Thread: Germany warms to Sevens

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    Germany warms to Sevens

    Germany warms to Sevens

    (IRB.COM) Tuesday 7 July 2009

    Germany coach Rainer Kumm is confident that the final of the European Sevens circuit on 10-11 July in Hannover can further boost rugby's drive to reach the Olympic Games.

    The immediate success of last year's first major Sevens tournament in Germany, a non-traditional rugby market, provided further proof of the sport's instant mass appeal.

    In 2008, a surprising 28,000 fans packed into the AWD-Arena for the first Hannover Sevens and, with four days until kick-off, the hosts are hoping for even more support for the team and the sport this year.

    "Sevens rugby is growing in Germany. Last year we had the first Hannover tournament in front of all those fans, so it's getting bigger and bigger," said Kumm.

    Germany are ranked 26th in the world in 15-a-side rugby and compete with the likes of Georgia, Romania, Portugal, Russia and Spain in the European Nations Cup or 'Six Nations B'. Sevens, however, gives the team and its fans a greater chance of success in the short term.

    "The fans have to give all they have in order for us being able to give all we have. Our boys are amateurs, they only play in front of such a crowd once a year," Kumm added.

    "It's all new for them but we're at home and with the support from the spectators we can really make it happen. Bring on the fans!"

    The hosts face a tough opening match against IRB Sevens World Series regulars France and then futher pool matches against Russia, Moldova and Romania.

    In the other pool defending champions Portugal start against Poland in the second match of the piece, with tougher games against Georgia, Italy and Spain to follow.

    In the run-up, hosts Germany played at the Emirates Airline London Sevens at Twickenham in May and, more recently, they have played practice matches against the British Army.

    "We are satisfied with our preparation. All our players are 100% fit," said Stevenson.

    "We managed to train well in Heidelberg last weekend but only real matches will show if our players understood what we tried to teach them.

    "We have built our training in such a way that it resembles a real tournament. The players are supposed to be tired so we train a lot.

    "I know that we won't be taken lightly by anyone and that every team will bring their A game. Portugal will still be the favorites", he added.

    England's women favourites

    Hannover also provides another showpiece for the women's game, which has gained in momentum since the inaugural Rugby World Cup Sevens for women in March 2009.

    World Cup quarter finalists England line up against Portugal in the opening match and start as favourites.

    Hosts Germany will also compete for the title alongside Italy, Spain, Russia, Portugal, Moldova, Netherlands, France and Sweden.

    "I saw the women compete at the World Cup in Dubai and was very impressed by the standard of women's Sevens and I'm confident that our tournament will provide it with another milestone," said event organiser Achim Behring-Scheil.

    Tickets

    Tickets are still available and can be purchased for the event at www.hannover-sevens.de (website in German, English and French)

    FIRA European Sevens circuit - qualifying heats

    Event 1: 16-17 May – Sopot (Poland) – winners Portugal
    Event 2: 23-24 May – Athens (Greece) – winners France
    Event 3: 30-31 May – Split (Croatia) - winners France
    Event 4: 6-7 June – Odessa (Ukraine) - winners Russia
    Event 5: 6-7 June – Ostrava (Czech Republic) - winners Portugal
    Event 6: 20-21 June – Moscow (Russia) - winners Italy
    Final: 11-12 July – Hanover (Germany)

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    Burgs, Do u have a link for this story?

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    The story was from the IRB TM: http://www.irb.com/rugbyandtheolympi...y+warms+sevens
    I guess there is a fair bit more at their website: www.hannover-sevens.de

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    Guys keep an eye on Germany. There is an Academy in Heidelberg called the WILD Rugby Academy. They are set up for the top U19 and U21's in Southern Germany. One of their objectives is to establish an professional outfit out of the Academy known as the WILD Titans. It will compete in the Euro Challenge Cup and if it all goes to plan it may happen next year. Along with that possible development the WILD Academy in Berlin in 2010 with the objective is to develop a second professional outfit in Northern Germany. The teams won't necessary compete outside the ECC or the Heineken cup if they get that far in a French or English Championship the idea will be to use the increased skill level and professionalism to improve the German Rugby Bundesliga to a high quality european Competition.

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    More the better... German rugby makes the RWC? ..... in 2015?

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