by Nigel Melville
Nigel Melville Direct
Just hours to go until the start of the Las Vegas International Sevens events for both men and women at the Sam Boyd Stadium. Having just attended the women’s banquet at Palace Station, I can assure you that the Eagles players are excited about their opening games tomorrow morning. The men have to wait until the early evening to kick off their campaign, but training has gone well this week, and I know that the players are determined to make an impact after a disappointing Wellington event.
Today the Las Vegas International was in full swing, a wide variety of teams from all corners of the planet competing across a wide range of international and domestic playing categories. A few interesting faces on show including former Springbok Center Andre Snyman, now coaching at the Glendale Raptors!
Of the field of play the USA Rugby Sevens Coaching Course kicked off lead by probably the most famous sevens player of all time Serevi. Spending time with Serevi to learn about the game of sevens must have been a wonderful experience for those attending. Tomorrow morning the USA Rugby Medical Symposium opens, I look forward to welcoming the delegates who have a busy day and some top quality speakers from the world of international sport.
Today’s meeting with the Sevens Advisory Group (SAG) was an important meeting for the nine HSBC World Sevens Series host unions. The SAG meet twice a year to discuss the series and cover operational, commercial and financial issues. Today we spent the morning working on the Host Union Agreement (HUA) an important document that makes sure that we have consistent delivery across all tournaments. We had presentations from the Team managers, media, broadcasters and HSBC, very interesting to learn about the growth of the Series and the impact the game of sevens is having across the globe. We also discussed the Olympic qualification process for 2016 and set out key performance indicators for the host events goinf forward – a long day, but a much needed meeting to clear the air on a few issues.
I am looking forward to meetings tomorrow, and of course, the fans, whostart arriving in the morning for the opening games tomorrow night at the Sam Boyd Stadium. Ticket sales are ahead of last year, I would think that tomorrow night will not be a huge crowd, but Saturday and Sunday will be the biggest crowd we have had at the sevens to date. The weather looks like its going to be warm, so if you are still thinking about coming along, don’t wait any longer, its going to be the best Las Vegas Sevens yet!!
With an impressive resume as player, coach and administrator, Nigel David Melville took over as CEO and President of Rugby Operations of USA Rugby, the National Governing Body of the sport in America, in 2006. In addition to his full time job promoting the sport in the U.S., Melville has launched his own blog, Nigel Melville Direct, to further the discussion and his passion for what it will take to make the U.S. a great rugby playing nation.
CLICK HERE to read more on Nigel Melville
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