The Sevens in Heaven Cook Islands International Sevens tournament kicks off today at Rarotonga's BCI stadium.
The annual competition is in its 21st year and will bring together 25 teams from across the Pacific including 16 from New Zealand and two from Australia.
The Cook Islands Tourism Corporation Director of Sales and Marketing, Karla Eggelton says the tournament is an opportunity for the Cook Islands to improve and develop the game in the country, and to take on more experienced teams.
She says the competition is set to be tough.
"Word on the street is that the Waimeha Rebels will be up to defend their title from last year. They featured some prominent players from New Zealand and some local talent from the Cook Islands. Tauae Bulls featuring Rene Ranger is ready to take on that challenge and we're looking at those two teams as heading into the finals."
Karla Eggelton says the three-day tournament has 19 men's teams and six women's teams.