Rugby Sevens

Photo of player being tackled during Rubgy Sevens match in Delhi 2010

A concertina version of the traditional rugby union game, Rugby Sevens is a fast and furious contest with high point-scoring, hard hits and lung-bursting sprints. Teams are made up of seven players, instead of the usual 15. It is played under substantially the same laws and on a field of the same dimensions, with a match consisting of two halves of seven minutes with a one-minute half-time break.

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Many of the top Rugby Sevens nations in the world are from the Commonwealth countries. This led to an exciting tournament.

Governing body

Scottish Rugby is the governing body for rugby union in Scotland. Scottish Rugby is a member of the International Rugby Board (IRB), which was founded in 1886. The IRB is the world governing and law-making body for the game of rugby union. Rugby Sevens is sanctioned by the IRB.


Rugby is a full-contact team sport which originated in England in the early 19th century based on running with the ball in hand. The Scottish Football Union was founded in 1873, ahead of a change to fifteen-a-side (from twenty-a-side) in 1877, the formation of the International Rugby Football Board in 1886 and the instigation of a points scoring system for rugby in 1889.

The seven-a-side game originated in Melrose, Scotland, where the Melrose Sevens tournament is still played annually. It is the oldest Rugby Sevens competition, dating from 1883.

Rugby Sevens have been played at four Commonwealth Games since its first appearance at the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. It is now a 'core' sport and therefore should be included in all future Games.

Rugby Sevens is now recognised as an Olympic sport and will make its debut in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.


  • Ibrox Stadium

    Information about Ibrox Stadium as a venue for the 2014 Games.

Other websites

  • Scottish Rugby Union

    The website of the Scottish Rugby Union contains coaching guidelines and lesson plans for teaching core skills in rugby.