Here's what you need to know about sevens' crown jewel event


The next stop on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series is right around the corner and it will see one of Asia’s most popular annual sporting events return in all its glory.

The Cathay/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens 2023 kicks off on 31 March at Hong Kong Stadium for three days of world-class rugby, entertainment and costumed fanfare. Rugby sevens’ crown jewel had a three-and-a-half year hiatus due to Covid, but returned in a streamlined format last November as Australia claimed the tournament’s title. And we get to rerun the fun!

There will be no restrictions on stadium capacity or Hong Kong Sevens tickets this time around, with all 40,000 seats available as the event re-establishes itself as a must-see experience for both rugby fans and newcomers alike.

We are here to break down what makes the iconic event so special…

Exhilarating rugby

For the serious sevens fanatics, the Hong Kong Sevens boasts high-quality, faced-paced and competitive rugby paired with an electric atmosphere. In its 47-year history, the tournament has seen iconic names such as Jonah Lomu and David Campese take to its pitches.

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This year will be no different, with 15 international teams like sevens heavyweights New Zealand, Argentina and France in action. This year’s competition will be even more intense as Hong Kong is hosting a stop of the HSBC Women’s Sevens Series too. Can the Black Ferns continue their streak of golds on the circuit (now at four in a row) or will Australia and the USA make their move?

For fans of Team GB, the men have been drawn in Pool B and will face France, Uruguay and hosts Hong Kong, while the women take on New Zealand, Canada and Hong Kong in Pool A.

There’s something for everyone

For rugby newbies, the Hong Kong Sevens is the perfect day out and a fantastic introduction to the sport’s seven-a-side format. Sevens is a quick and exciting variation of rugby union and is made up of seven players on each team playing seven-minute halves instead of the usual 15 players for 40-minute halves.

The sport is incredibly spectator-friendly and requires no prior experience to enjoy. It’s full of breathless, non-stop action and tries are incredibly frequent. The shorter format also gives you a chance to enjoy the other amenities laid on at the festival of rugby…

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The biggest party of the year

One of the best traditions of the Hong Kong Sevens is the spectators’ passion for fancy dress and revelry which creates the festival’s carnival atmosphere. People tend to dress up on the Saturday and, as usual, rugby fans don’t hold back. The famous South Stand is rambunctious and perfect for those looking to have a good time while enjoying the competition.

High-quality music, food and drink will also be in full force as the Hong Kong Sevens boasts some of the best entertainment for fans. You can expect a full calendar of music acts, with previous performances including Gwen Stefani and Hong Kong’s best-loved Ska band, The Red Stripes.

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