Sevens Series to be streamed live online
The International Rugby Board has announced that, for the first time, the HSBC Sevens World Series will be streamed live online.
Uninterrupted action of all nine rounds of the 2013/14 Series will be available to watch on the official website, irbsevens.com, starting with round one on Australia's Gold Coast on 12-13 October.
The development follows the success of the live streaming from Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013 in Moscow, which was viewed by over 260,000 unique users over the three days.
In territories where broadcast agreements are in place geo-blocking may apply, however the live streaming solution means that the popular action will be accessible to Rugby fans in every country in the world, allowing them to both watch and engage with the Series via integrated social media.
"This is an exciting development for sports fans and a giant leap forward in helping to satisfy the strong global demand for Rugby Sevens, which continues to engage new fans around the world," said the IRB's General Manager for Rugby Sevens, Avan Lee.
"Since Rugby Sevens joined the Olympic programme, the game has benefited from record broadcast exposure on television, and this new step into the world of live online viewership significantly enhances our offering.
"Millions of people already watch the World Series on television around the world, and will continue to, but this online platform now gives existing and new fans the chance to see every pass, tackle and try from our showcase Series.
"We've had nothing but positive feedback from the Rugby family about this and we're excited to see how it goes."
IRB Chairman, Bernard Lapasset, added: "With three years until our return to the Olympic stage in Rio we want more than ever to make Rugby accessible to people everywhere, so it is with immense pride that we can now make our premium Sevens product viewable in every corner of the world. That is the universality we are striving for as we build towards 2016 and beyond."
Giles Morgan, Global Head of Sponsorship & Events, HSBC Holdings plc, commented: "We are delighted that, through this innovation, the HSBC Sevens World Series will be opened up and made accessible to a much larger, global audience. Rugby Sevens is growing at a phenomenal rate around the world and this exciting new online platform will enable even more fans to engage with the sport."
An announcement will be made regarding the coverage of the IRB Women's Sevens World Series in due course.
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