The Women's Int'l Rugby Sevens tournament will be held Thursday through Sunday in Zengcheng, China, and Int'l Rugby Board GM for Asia Jarrad Gallagher said that hosting int'l rugby tournaments "will play a major role in raising the profile of the sport" within the country, according to Qiu Quanlin of the CHINA DAILY. Gallagher said, "The key point of bringing an event to Guangzhou is that it will help inspire more interest from all circles in rugby." Gallagher said that with the Rugby World Cup coming to Japan in '19, "there now exists a tremendous opportunity to raise awareness and promote the game" throughout Asia. China Rugby Association General Secretary Liu Rongyao said that "to further promote rugby," which is returning to the Summer Olympics in '16, China will include the sport in its National Games next year. China, which became an official member of the IRB in '97, has yet to qualify for a Rugby World Cup (CHINA DAILY, 10/22).
Events and Attractions
F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone "wants Austrian energy drink company Red Bull to take on the responsibility and put the race project in New Jersey back on track," according to AUTOBILD. The inaugural edition of the F1 race in New Jersey was initially planned for June, "but financing problems have recently postponed the race until '14." To make sure F1 will race in New Jersey in '14, Ecclestone "is looking for investors that will help fulfill his vision." Ecclestone said, "I might get the Red Bull man behind the race project. It's a good market for them." With Red Bull man, Ecclestone was referring to Chalerm Yoovidhya, the son of Red Bull co-Founder Chaleo Yoovidhya, who holds a 51% stake in the company. A company that "spends several millions for a jump from the edge of space definitely also has the necessary funding to sponsor an F1 race in the New York market" (AUTOBILD, 10/22).
Pakistan Cricket Board Chair Zaka Ashraf said that the board is "negotiating with five boards" to bring their respective teams to Pakistan, in hopes int'l cricket "will resume in the country soon," according to PAKISTAN TODAY. Ashraf said that the ongoing friendly exhibition matches with a World XI team "was a step in that direction, and it would eventually pave the way for Test teams visiting Pakistan." Ashraf: "I think these matches are a good step, and we supported and encouraged these matches. When you talk of international cricket, we are in negotiations with Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe cricket boards. I was in Colombo [Sri Lanka] recently, and I talked to them about sending their team. We are talking to two other boards as well, but I am not going to reveal names. We have given them security plans and hope good results will come soon" (PAKISTAN TODAY, 10/21).
Next season's Volvo World Match Play Championship will "break new ground" for the European Tour by being staged in Bulgaria. The Gary Player-designed Thracian Cliffs beside the Black Sea will become the new venue on May 16-19 (IRISH INDEPENDENT, 10/22). ... Pakistan has postponed its scheduled tour of Zimbabwe in December. "in the hope of touring India" for a One-Day Int'l and Twenty20 series. A Pakistan Cricket Board official said Sunday the tour of Zimbabwe will now be held "some time" next year (AP, 10/22). ... FIFA has revealed that tickets for the 2013 Confederations Cup will go on sale Dec. 3. The drawing for the groups of the event will take place two days before on Dec. 1 in São Paulo, Brazil (VEJA, 10/18).