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American Samoa’s Talavalu Captain, Feite Okesene, a 27-year-old from the village of Lauli'i is pictured with a member of the Cantonese Opera, who performed during the official introduction of the Captains of the 16 participating Core teams on the 2013/2014 HSBC Sevens World Series, the third-placed finisher on the HSBC Asian Sevens series- Sri Lanka, and the 12-team HSBC Sevens World series Qualifier competition.


According to Terry Auva’a of Samoa News, who is in Hong Kong as part of our team coverage, Okesene was seen signing his first autographs and being asked by fans — especially kids — to have their photo taken with him. He was also interviewed by the IRB, representing American Samoa’s national team — Talavalu — in their historic appearance in the iconic rugby event. See inside Sports today for more details.




The Captains from the 15 participating 2013-14 HSBC Sevens World Series Core teams plus the third-placed finisher on the HSBC Asian Sevens series, Sri Lanka, pose with the 12  HSBC Sevens World series Qualifier teams.


The winner of the Qualifier tournament will receive automatic Core Team status on the HSBC Sevens World Series in 2015.


(Left of center) are the 16 participating Teams: Fiji, Kenya, Wales, Sri Lanka (Pool A); South Africa, Australia, France, Spain (Pool B); England, Canada, Argentina, Portugal (Pool C); New Zealand, United States, Scotland, Samoa (Pool D).


With the 16 Captains of the Core Teams (Right from the center) are the Captains of the 12 pre-qualifier teams (two from each of the six International Rugby Board regions) from American Samoa, Barbados, Chile, Cook Islands, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Russia, Trinidad&Tobago, Tunisia, Uruguay, and Zimbabwe.


Center (L-R): Simon Large, General Manager Marketing, Loyalty Program & CRM, Cathay Pacific Airways; Giles Morgan, Global Head of Sponsorship and Events, HSBC; Avan Lee, General Manager Sevens for the International Rugby Board; and Trevor Gregory, Chairman of the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union.


Total Prize money for the Cathay Pacific/ HSBC Hong Kong Sevens is: US$ 150,000; the breakdown: Cup Champion  — US$ 100,000, Cup Runner-up — US$ 25,000, Semi-finalists — US$12,500 (each).


Dates of competition are March 28 - 30, 2014 (Friday to Sunday), at the Hong Kong Stadium (capacity 40,000 people), with the following times: March 28 (Friday) — 02:00 pm – 09:42 pm, March 29 (Saturday) — 09:00 am – 07:32 pm, and March 30 (Sunday) —10:00 am – 07:30 pm.


Official draw for the Core Teams competition was held prior to the Tokyo Sevens Cup Final on Mar. 23, 2014.


Match Duration for the HK7s is 7 minutes each way, with 2-minute intervals, with the exception of the Cup Final, which is 10 minutes each way.


Schedule for the Tourney is as follows:


Day 1 (21 games): Each Core Team plays 1 game in their pool (8 matches). Each Qualifier competition team will play 2 games in their pool (12 matches). In the Qualifier competition, upon completion of the Pool matches, the top 2 teams from each pool plus the two next best teams will go through to the Quarter Finals.


Day 2 (26 games): Completion of pool play for SWS and Qualifier tournament. Completion of Quarter Finals for the Qualifier competition.


Day 3 (24 games): SWS Quarter Finals, Semi Finals, and Finals of each of the Shield, Bowl, Plate and Cup Competition. Semi Finals and Cup Final of the Qualifier competition.


Organizer of the event is the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union, with Co-Title Sponsors, Cathay Pacific Airways and HSBC.