The adjustment of the HSBC Sevens World Series seeding process is a welcome development for teams and coaches.
The previous seeding system, which alternated between seeding teams based on the current World Series standings and seeding teams based on their last two tournament finishes, was not popular among many teams as it often locked teams into the same pools or similar pools.
In addition, the old system decided pools sometimes a tournament too early – for example, under the old system, the pools for the USA 7s would be decided before the Wellington 7s had been held.
Coaches and teams didn’t like that, because if, say, France did well in Wellington, they wouldn’t get credit for it in Las Vegas. Then, when a tough draw meant France got no points in Las Vegas, their ranking for the next two events would suffer.
Now the draw is more random but it also made right at the end of each tournament, meaning that tournament’s results matter for the next event.
“The coaches supported the idea as it came from the committee of core coaches and coaches that appear a lot on the series,” said USA Coach Al Caravelli. “We wanted to have the draws done publicly. This new system rewards form, has less predictability, and keeps the game exciting for spectators and is the best thing for the teams and the countries. I think it shows again that Sevens leads the way within the IRB in how we are thinking progressively.”