Step and unbelievable dummy sets up try


Female Streaker has no regrets


The Top 5 Schoolboy Prodigies


Brian O'Driscoll Breakdown Masterclass


Mike Brown's great try saving tackle


Cheslin Kolbe dazzling run, no look pass


Tameifuna's huge hit on Michael Hooper


Ben Funnell slamming tackle on Hawkins


Horwill & Bismarck Du Plessis slaps

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Can top Sevens players earn a decent living from it?

Can top Sevens players earn a decent living from it?

Sevens Rugby is now more mainstream than ever, with large TV audiences, massive tournament attendances, and fitter, faster players than ever before. It's a serious business, but is there money to be made for the players themselves?

In October of last year, for the first time, the IRB Sevens World Series took on a major sponsor in the form of HSBC.
From now until the 2016 Olympic Games, they will strive to grow the sport at both grassroots and the highest level, reaching new fans while promoting the series.

Players are of course contracted by their countries though, so do they make decent money, comparable to normal rugby at least? The answer is both yes and no.

As you'd expect, in some of the bigger rugby countries players have contracts that allow them to train and focus on the sport full time. In fact some even have provincial or club contracts too, bringing in dual salaries. Each country differs though, and in some, as you see in the video, playing the game is still simply for the love of it, as rugby was before professionalism.

It would be interesting to learn about each country's set up individually, so if anyone knows any more about it, please feel free to share with everyone in the comments.


Time: 05:56
Note: Thanks to Total Rugby for another great feature

Posted at 3:43 pm | 27 comments

Viewing 27 comments

dutchrugbyplayer February 02, 2011 4:37 pm

Wow, basicly they do it for the love of the game. Lots of respect for that.
Besides that it is nice to see that even the countries with no budget at all can compete at the very highest level (Samoa being the best example). Cool!

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Anonymous February 02, 2011 4:41 pm

not bad for a farmers and a taxi drivers to won it all last yr(Samoa)lol

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t0m0 February 02, 2011 4:45 pm

England has centrally contracted its sevens players meaning they dont have to scratch a living in second divisions in Europe.

Id imagine some of the top nations, have done, or will do, the same shortly.

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Now that Sevens is an Olympic sport all competing nations' Olympic Programmes will have to devote time and effort into developing their teams and the sport in the country.

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Also, Sevens in the US is about to take off massively, held the Collegiate Championships last year and it was a big success with viewers. NBC signed a massive broadcast contract with USA Sevens, owners of the IRB Vegas tournament and a seperate entity to USA Rugby.

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Basically, it's about to be very big business.

@LoveSportSpro on Twitter

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Anonymous February 02, 2011 4:49 pm

of all the greats in 7s RD decided to use kurt bitch pic lol

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Alexander February 02, 2011 4:56 pm

I truly believe in the grand scheme of things sevens is more important than 15s right now, simply because it is the gateway for promoting the game worldwide (e.g. the olympics), as other nations seem to find this their way of discovering rugby (e.g. Kenya). Also, at 4.14 in video.....nice...personalities?

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Anonymous February 02, 2011 5:17 pm

All Portugal players are amateurs in both XV and rugby sevens... and they still show a pretty good level...

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Anonymous February 02, 2011 5:20 pm

2 men lineouts 3 men scrums... it's a kids game.

if we really would like to promote rugby it should be at the very minimum be 10 men on the field. So it would actually have some similarities to 15s.

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Guest December 08, 2011 12:37 am

I bet your a fat mess of a prop!!!

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Conor December 09, 2011 4:15 am

Agreed, if you knew anything about rugby you'd see that sevens puts all the basics of rugby under the microscope, as the game is faster and theres less players the margin for error is greatly reduced. eg FAT PROPS missing tackles will lose matches.

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Josh October 29, 2013 10:13 pm

It's a kids game? LOL

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Anonymous February 02, 2011 5:47 pm

In Brazil, both the rugby sevens as well as the 15's not enough money for a player to be able to live it. Here we still played for love without gaining nothin in return, and often pay to play because each player ends up paying their registration in the league, means of locomotion until the game and for all what he needs to use in their practices and games.
But we hope that with the Olympics going on here and with the return of rugby, this will change. And we have new perspectives.

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Anonymous February 02, 2011 6:18 pm

I love the popularity sevens is gaining here in the US. It's a long way away from becoming mainstream, but it's good for all forms of rugby here. I have more love for 15's as a sport, but I'm definitely much better at 7's. Never been very good at crashing the ball; much more adept at dancing around and speeding down the field...

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Lucas February 02, 2011 7:13 pm

Qu dinero puede comparar el jugar el circuito internacional? Me extraa rugbydump, esto es pasin papa.

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Lucas February 02, 2011 7:15 pm

Money can't compare with playing te international circuit. I'm stunned rugbydump, this is passion.

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Anonymous February 02, 2011 8:01 pm

its a different game to 15 a side with different skills. speed and fitness are obviously more important with defence less important. id say passing has roughly the same importance

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chris farley played February 02, 2011 8:59 pm

Really, t0m0, the day I see rugby on NBC, I'll send NBC a check for $100.

Maybe on a crazy high-number cable channel or something, but I doubt they'd ever broadcast sevens - no matter how great it is to watch - on NBC proper.

But hey, I hope I'm wrong...

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On another note, I noticed when they were introducing the US, it was "...the United States of America [cut to shot of big-breasted blonde]".

I hope these guys can start getting paid decently; I love 15's like none other, but these guys are some of the most extraordinary athletes around. That ought to be reflected in their paycheck, I think.

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Anonymous February 02, 2011 9:21 pm

If America tried they could be a huge force in international Rugby. Ridiculous natural ability. F

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Jon February 02, 2011 10:10 pm

NBC is already shwoing sevens Chris Farley played rugby.
They broadcast the Collegiate sevens on NBC, and they are going to show eight hours of the Las Vegas sevens 2011 on primetime.
It's because of the Olypmic angle.
Honestly sevens is going to explode in the leadup to Brazil 2016, countries that are traditional Olympic powers like Russia, China and the USA will as a matter of course, invest millions into sevens rugby to try and win medals.
That will be huge for the sport.

In regards to how countries pay their sevens players, in Australia it is now used as a development pathway.
Alot of the curent Wallabies backline have played in sevens rugby, Genia, Quade Cooper, Lachie Turner, James O'Conner, Kurtley Beale, the list goes on.
It's an excellent way to develop the fitness and skills of young backline players, and that's how Australia uses it. So they are paid by the national union usually.

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Canadian Content February 02, 2011 10:12 pm

This video is not really much of a revelation as well. I was once long listed for the Cdn National 7's team (yes impressive I know), trained with the team and received not a penny. I did it for the loved of the game and the opportunities it provided.
The regular players all lived like university students but benefited greatly by the otherwise unattainable experiences they had. Should they e paid more? No, not really, the market decides what they get paid and I think the market is fair. However, I do think it's sad that the world champs work and scratch for a living, provide most of the entertainment and don't reap the rewards. Some sort of revenue sharing would be appropriate.

I liked the USA coaches position (and the clip at 4:14 as well, I am sure some of the fellahs still earn a lil bit of that, god love them) in that you don't have to be a pro to act like one. I've played with a few national team players who did behaved this way and eventually became pros as a result.

I don't agree with his opinion that %80 of NBA players are only in it for the money, as I am sure that many of them have worked very hard to get where they have and we should not begrudge them then money they have earned.

That being said, more 7's please, unlike 15's, it is always entertaining to watch and you are guaranteed tries. Anyone know where you can watch it regularly on the internet?

Finally congratulations to the first 10 posters on this discussion forum, your contributions to this discussion are priceless.

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mungret February 03, 2011 12:38 am

In Ireland players used to be able to receive three contracts. Club, Province and country. Thank god it's stopped now.

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Anonymous February 03, 2011 12:43 am

I love sevens better than 15s. I'm Scottish and devasted that the home of sevens is scrapping its Sevens squad and giving up the Murrayfield leg of the World Series.

I believe there needs to be a huge sevens World Cup with as many competitive countries as possible.

Unfortunately the Olympics have scrapped it.

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Steve Munford February 03, 2011 4:39 pm

Svens rugby has done a terric job at promoting the game and making rugby fans aware of countries such as Samoa, Fiji and Kenya. It has also brought rugby to the Olympics, which can only help to attract more players to the game. Furthermore, anyone who has played sevens, barring usually the front row, will know just how exhilirating it can be and long may it continue to be supported and funded.

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Armand February 04, 2011 1:52 am

It's been said, but it is crazy to see how sevens has blown up here in the States! Even small tournaments are pulling in all kinds of teams and spectators, and the Las Vegas tournament is gaining huge publicity. Moving the USA leg from San Diego was a brilliant move.

Sevens is more accessible for fans who are unfamiliar with the game. 15s is a big twinkie to swallow for people who have only watched football. It demands too much commitment to learn rules and strategy. 7s is relatively straightforward, and more importantly, extremely exciting to watch, and I think it will blow up in popularity in the US in the next few years.

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Armand February 04, 2011 1:53 am

I'd love to see more 7s on RD, btw.

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smally December 23, 2013 10:31 am

America to win gold at next olympics worth a ten pound bet.wonder what the odds are.also how many big stars from 15s will try and get a sniff for a medal :-)


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