RUGBY SEVENS ACCEPTED AS AN OLYMPIC SPORT

The IOC announced today that Rugby Sevens has been accepted as an Olympic sport for the 2016 and 2020 games! The 2016 games will be in Rio de Janeiro.

Rugby, last played in 1924, is coming back to the Olympics. By a vote of 81-8 with one abstention, the International Olympic Committee approved Rugby Sevens beginning in 2016.  Rugby will organize a four-day seven-a-side tournament - instead of the more traditional 15-a-side game - for 12 men's and women's teams.

Rugby officials touted their sport as a modern game that can attract young fans and new sponsors.

"The sevens format is made for television, made for sponsors, and most importantly loved for fans and players alike," said bid leader Mike Miller, the secretary-general of the International Rugby Board. "Rugby and Rio were made for each other. A great atmosphere, great sport and a good time. And I think that's what the Olympic Games are going to be all about."

The Rugby Sevens World Cup will be canceled if the sport is added to the Olympics.

Golf was also approved as a new Olympic sport. They are the first new sports added since triathlon and taekwondo joined the program for the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

The vote was a reversal of the IOC's decision four years ago to reject golf and rugby for the 2012 Olympics, and brings the number of summer Olympic sports back to 28. There have been two openings on the program since baseball and softball were dropped in 2005 for the 2012 London Games.

Rugby and golf both made their Olympic debuts at the second modern games in Paris in 1900. Golf was played again only at the 1904 St. Louis Games, and 15-a-side rugby was featured three more times, its last appearance in the 1924 Paris Olympics.

Their status for the 2020 Olympics will be reviewed by the IOC in 2017.

Golf and rugby were put forward by the executive board in August under Jacque Rogge's guidance, at the expense of five other sports that were cut - baseball, softball, squash, karate and roller sports.

 

 

 

       

Click here for the story in Rugby Magazine 

 

Check out Rugby Sevens new 'Reaching Out' video here 

 

Click here to read The Olympic Dream Fulfilled - Goff on Rugby