Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022: When is it, how to watch, host nation, countries, format

Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022: When is it, how to watch, host nation, countries, format

40 different teams – across men’s and women’s draws – are set to take part in the Rugby World Cup Sevens for 2022.

The Sporting News has everything you need to know about the tournament.

When is the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022?

Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022 will take place between September 9 – 11. 

Qualifying and round of 16 matches will be held on the opening Friday, with the quarter-finals, semi-finals and championship final to run over Saturday and Sunday.

Which nation is hosting Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022?

South Africa is the host nation for this year’s Rugby World Cup Sevens.

All matches will take place at one venue – Cape Town Stadium.

Located in the picturesque district of Green Point, the stadium fits up to 55,000 fans.

Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022 tournament format

Both the men’s and women’s tournaments will run in a knockout format.

With 24 nations to feature in the men’s draw, a ‘pre-round of 16’ will take place to narrow the field.

This will see teams compete in knockout matches to join the eight pre-qualified nations.

From that point on, both men’s and women’s draws will comprise 16 nations each, and will follow the same structure:

  • Round of 16
  • Quarter-final
  • Semi-final
  • Championship final

Those nations that are eliminated in the pre-round of 16 or round of 16, will be entered into ‘bowl’ and ‘challenge’ side tournaments, respectively. 

The full draw can be viewed here.

Countries competing at the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022

24 nations will feature in the men’s draw whilst the women’s draw contains 16 teams.

Men’s

New Zealand England
South Africa Fiji
Argentina USA
France Scotland
Wales Germany
Portugal Ireland
Uganda Zimbabwe
Kenya Canada
Jamaica Hong Kong
Korea Uruguay
Chile Australia
Samoa  Tonga

Women’s

New Zealand France
Australia USA
South Africa Spain
England Poland
Ireland Madagascar
Canada Japan
China Brazil 
Colombia Fiji

How to watch Rugby World Cup Sevens 2022

For nations without an official broadcast partner, a live stream for every match will be available via the tournament’s match centre.

You can view the full list of official broadcasters here.

Matches are scheduled to begin around 8:00am local time (7:00am BST / 2:00am ET / 4:00pm AEST) and will generally conclude around 10:00pm local time (9:00pm BST, 4:00pm ET / 6:00am +1 AEST).

A detailed match schedule can be viewed here.

What is rugby sevens and how is it different from rugby union?

As the name alludes to, rugby sevens involves teams of seven players face-off in a fast-paced and typically high-scoring game.

Whilst following the general style of rugby union, there are a number of different rules. 

Some of the differences in rugby sevens include:

  • Seven players per team on the field (rather than 15)
  • Seven-minute halves (rather than 40)
  • Five substitutes and interchanges (rather than 8)
  • Two-minute half-time break (rather than 10)
  • Golden point extra time in event of a draw
  • Three-player scrums (rather than 8)
  • Drop-kick conversions (rather than placed)
  • Team that scores last kicks off (not conceding team)

Who are the reigning Rugby World Cup Sevens champions?

New Zealand lived up to its strong reputation in 2018, winning both the men’s and women’s tournaments at the most recent World Cup. 

Their men’s side beat England 33-12 in the final, whilst their women’s side held France to nil in their final, winning 29-0.