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Asian Rugby 7’s Olympic Pre-Qualifiers for Rio 2016 Olympics

Asian Rugby 7s Olympic Pre Qualifier Press Conference Stills (1) A 12 Nation international rugby 7’s tournament, which is a pre-qualifier for the Rio 2016 Olympics in Brazil.

The event is being held by the Tamil Nadu Rugby Football Union (TNRFU) under the aegis of the Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu (SDAT):

This event will be the biggest international Rugby tournament to be held in India

The event is supported by the Government of Tamil Nadu and the Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu (SDAT)

The Tamil Nadu Rugby Football Union (TNRFU) under the aegis of the Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu (SDAT) is organizing India’s largest Rugby tournament – ASIAN RUGBY 7’S OLYMPIC PRE-QUALIFIERS 2015 in an announcement made today. It is scheduled to be held on Saturday and Sunday, 7th and 8th March 2015 at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium – Chennai. The tournament will play host to 12 Asian countries namely Guam, Iran, Philippines, South Korea, Uzbekistan, Laos, UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, Nepal, Brunei and India, in the Men’s and Women’s categories.

Event Details:

Location: Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Chennai
Date: 7th (Saturday) and 8th (Sunday), March 2015
Time: 10am to 8pm
Entrance: Stand ‘B’ and ‘H’
Tickets: Free entry
Website: www.tnrfu.in / www.rugbyindia.in

Press conference panelists

Mr. Aga Hussain, Sr.Vice President, Rugby India (IRFU)
Mr. Raj Satyen – President, Tamil Nadu Rugby Football Union (TNRFU)
Representative from the Sports development authority of Tamil Nadu (SDAT)
Mr. Bharaneeshwaran, Board Chairman, TNRFU
Mr. Sendhil Thiyagarajan – Secretary, TNRFU

About the event: Asian Rugby 7’s Olympic Pre-Qualifiers 2015 (Chennai)

After the success of the Men’s 7s event in Goa (2011) and Mumbai(2012 and 2013) and the Women’s 7s event in Pune(2011, 2012 and 2013). India has been given the honor of conducting the Men’s and Women’s Pre-Qualifier to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games to be held in Rio de Janerio, Brazil. The Pre-Qualifier for both the Men and Women will be held in Chennai, Tamil Nadu on the 7th and 8th of March 2015.

QUOTE: On the occasion Mr. Raj Satyen – President, Tamil Nadu Rugby Football Union (TNRFU) said “It is a matter of great pride for the TNRFU that such a high profile tournament is being held in Chennai. This would not have been possible without the unconditional support from the Government of Tamil Nadu and SDAT. With such International Tournaments and ARFU’s tremendous support, Rugby in India will grow exponentially in the coming years.”
The Tournament will be intense and will feature 8 Men’s Teams and 8 Women’s Team from Across Asia. The Asian Sevens will be held at the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai.

QUOTE: Mr.Bharaneeshwaran, Board Chairman, TNRFU highlighted that “ The Government of Tamil Nadu and SDAT have been continuously supporting various International and National sporting events and disciplines in the state. We are immensely proud to have Chennai host the Rugby Pre-Qualifiers for the Rio 2016 Olympics.”

QUOTE: Mr. Aga Hussain, Sr.Vice President, Rugby India (IRFU) He also added that “With a host of grass root development programs for Rugby in India, we will continue to ensure the growth of this sport in every possible way and will also look at opportunities to host more such Rugby tournaments in our country.”

The Asian Rugby Sevens will be the first International Rugby Event conducted in Chennai. Local and National Celebrities, Expats from different countries will be invited to witness, Chennai’s first International Rugby Event.
QUOTE: Throwing light on the development programs for the sport, Mr. Sendhil Thiyagarajan – Secretary, TNRFU reiterated “The TNRFU along with IRFU have conceptualized a strong grass root program across the state to develop rugby. Corporates in the country have to support non-cricket sports like rugby to make India a truly sporting nation.”

History of Rugby 7’s

Rugby sevens was initially conceived in 1883 by Ned Haig and David Sanderson, who were butchers from Melrose, Scotland as a fund-raising event for their local club, Melrose RFC. The first ever sevens match was played at the Greenyards, the Melrose ground. The first ever officially sanctioned international tournament occurred at Murrayfield as part of the “Scottish Rugby Union’s Celebration of Rugby” centenary celebrations in 1973.
Due to the success of the format, the ongoing Hong Kong Sevens was launched three years later, in 1976. The Rugby World Cup Sevens, in which the Melrose Cup is contested, was launched in 1993. Three of the best known sevens competitions are the Hong Kong Sevens, Wellington Sevens, and the Dubai Sevens , which now make up part of the World Rugby Sevens World Series.

About the Asian Rugby Football Union (ARFU)

The Asian Rugby Football Union (ARFU) is the regional governing body of rugby union in Asia.  ARFU, which was founded in 1968, comprised of Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Thailand.  Its purpose was to provide international competition between its members by staging a biannual tournament.  ARFU members actively participate in semi-annual council meetings and are supported by working committees to oversee rugby in Asia.  ARFU organizes and manages five major tournaments per year for Men, Women and Youth and continually explores new and innovative opportunities to develop rugby in Asia.  The growth of rugby in Asia is reflected in the increase of ARFU members, tournaments, events and activities.

About Indian Rugby Football Union (IRFU)

Indian Rugby Football Union is the governing body for Rugby union in India. The earliest trace of Rugby Football in India dates back to a scratch match or two played in Calcutta and Madras during the visit of H.M.S. Galatea in 1871. The teak goal posts used on the occasion of the Calcutta Match were afterwards used by the C.F.C. up to at least 1886.

The recent history of rugby in India is an exciting one. Rapid growth over the past several years since the formation of The Indian Rugby Football Union in 1968 and it subsequent membership to the sport’s international governing body the International Rugby Board (IRB) in April 1999 has seen numbers of clubs and players increase dramatically in all versions of the game – 15s, 7,s and Touch (or Tag) rugby.

About Tamil Nadu Rugby Football Union (TNRFU)

Tamil Nadu Rugby Football Union is the governing body for rugby for the state of Tamil Nadu in India. The Tamil Nadu Rugby Football Union is a legally registered non-profit society with the goal of developing the sport of rugby union football in South India. The TNRFU conducts rugby development programs in schools across the state. In addition the TNRFU has helped get rugby started in Pondicherry, Kerala and Bangalore in South India. The government of Tamil Nadu will be shortly introducing Rugby in the school curriculum from the next school term.