Vanuatu Rugby Union and the 2017 Pacific Mini Games were given a boost in preparations by the joint donation of equipment from the Central Coast 7s, Parramatta Two Blue Rugby Club and Hart Sports. The new equipment included 2 boxes of hit shields, goal post pads, corner post pads and marker cones. This will be used during the tournament by teams and then passed onto the Vanuatu Rugby Union. Parramatta Two Blues General Manager and Central Coast 7s Founder Craig Morgan said it was a good way for the organisations to give back to Rugby in the Pacific Unions. After speaking with Oceania Rugby Competitions Manager Wayne Schuster about the preparations the organisations saw an opportunity to help. “We have teams coming from around the Pacific to compete at the Central Coast 7s and the Western Sydney 7s (which Morgan is also involved in), there was an opportunity for us to help and we were able to get some new gear to Vanuatu which we hope will help the teams.” Morgan added. In 2017 there were 6 teams from Fiji and 1 from Tonga attended the Central Coast 7s and the national team from Nauru competed in the inaugural Western Sydney 7s ahead of the 2017 Oceania Rugby Sevens Championships in November and this weeks 2017 Pacific Mini Games. “Vanuatu Rugby is grateful for the donations from the Central Coast 7s, Parramatta Two Blue Rugby Club and Hart Sports, it is a boost in our faciliation of the Rugby Sevens event for the Games" said John Miller Kalo, Board Member of Vanuatu Rugby Union. "The VAN2017 Games also means a lot for Vanuatu Rugby because at the moment rugby has a stagnant growth and having Rugby 7s in the Mini Games will help promote the sport in Vanuatu,” said Kalo, who is also President of Ovins Rugby Club in Port Vila added.
Samoa v Nauru were thankful for the new goal post pads at the Van2017 Pacific Mini Games
“It is also a new start for us because after this tournament there will surely be a lot of interest in Rugby,” Kalo Said. “Hopefully our team performs well as it will attract more players especially children and also attract more sponsors." Oceania Rugby continues to support the 2017 Pacific Mini Games with Technical Officers, Match Officials and Judicial Officers. The 2017 Pacific Mini Games Rugby Sevens event kicks off today Friday 8th December at 2pm local time and concludes on Saturday 9th December. Click here for the full draw. The Rugby 7's event this year takes on an extra meaning for Oceania Rugby Member Unions with the highest ranked team (not already qualified) earning a qualification spot to the 2018 Rugby World Cup 7s, joining Australia, Fiji, New Zealand Papua New Guinea and Samoa. Participating teams (in alphabetical order):