Rugby World Cup Sevens San Francisco Hosts ‘Nations Welcome’ Event To Open Tournament

In 2015, World Rugby granted hosting rights of the largest international sevens tournament to USA Rugby. And that year, San Francisco was named the host city in another economic development achievement for the late San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee. Mayor Lee said at the time “On behalf of the City and County of San Francisco, we are thrilled to be hosting the 2018 Rugby World Cup Sevens. As a city experienced in hosting major sporting events, San Francisco is eager to welcome global audiences and Rugby fans from around the world.”

Now, USA Rugby heads the production of Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 international tournament in San Francisco, working closely with World Rugby, local partners and officials.

Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 event organizers are producing a free-to-the-public event on July 19 2018. Called ‘Nations Welcome’ the welcome ceremony is sponsored by the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in San Francisco. (Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 recently secured HSBC as a sponsor.)

Nations Welcome starts at 5:00 P.M. in Embarcadero Plaza, at the foot of San Francisco’s Market Street, and will feature the men and women of the 40 teams competing in Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018.

“Our office is proud to present the Welcome Ceremony and be a celebration partner of the Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 in San Francisco,” said Ivanhoe Chang, Director of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office in San Francisco. “Rugby has long been a key event on Hong Kong’s sporting event calendar. Every year, rugby players and fans from around the world descend on Hong Kong to experience the excitement of the Hong Kong Sevens, the premier tournament in the World Rugby Sevens Series. This April, we welcomed 28 teams and 120,000 spectators over the three-day tournament. In addition, Hong Kong stages many other international sports events, from marathons and equestrian events to E-Prix and regattas.”

In addition to Nations Welcome, the event will begin with a special performance by a cast member from, San Francisco’s pop culture musical revue Steve Silver’s Beach Blanket Babylon, as well as feature a Cantonese Opera act. Cantonese Opera is considered one of the most representative traditional art forms in Hong Kong.

Rosie Spaulding, General Manager, Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 said “Our partnership with the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office enables us to celebrate tremendous athletes with their fans before the competition begins. We’re excited about what this landmark Rugby World Cup will mean for the sport of rugby in the United States, and feel there is no better city to host it than San Francisco.”

This tournament will be the first Rugby World Cup in America. Rugby World Cup Sevens will take place at AT&T Park San Francisco July 20-22, 2018. Rugby World Cup 2018 will see the best teams from around the globe – 24 men’s and 16 women’s – compete for the coveted title of Rugby World Cup champions. Competing nations / territories include Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, England, Fiji, France, Hong Kong, Ireland, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Russia, Samoa, Scotland, South Africa, Spain, Tonga, Uganda, Uruguay, United States of America, Wales and Zimbabwe.

Rugby World Cup 2018 staff say this: “Over the course of three days, international pride will be running high at AT&T Park. With just seven minutes per half and seven players on the field, the tournament’s new innovative knock-out match schedule means both high stakes and high displays of athleticism. This is the first time knockout-style play will be seen in a Rugby World Cup. In addition to the excitement on the pitch, Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 will feature live entertainment and pageantry throughout the tournament, replete with fans dressed in country colors and costume.”

A limited number of single-day tickets and three-day Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 passes are available for purchase. For more information about the free Welcome Ceremony July 19 and how to purchase tickets for Rugby World Cup Sevens 2018 visit

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