9 Feb 2013

New ARU boss says sevens is way forward

9:48 am on 9 February 2013

The new Australian Rugby Union boss Bill Pulver says Australia is lagging behind the world for funding in sevens rugby, which he sees as the growth area for the game.

Pulver also wants to revive a third-tier national rugby competition and believes it could fall to the responsibility of Super Rugby clubs.

With sevens to be played at the Olympics in Rio in 2016, Pulver who started in the top job this week after replacing John O'Neill, says it is an area to be further embraced.

Currently, Australian sevens representatives can't play Super Rugby, and Wallabies such as Melbourne's James O'Connor and Kurtley Beale are unable to play sevens, something Pulver would like to see changed.

The Australian men's sevens side has long been used as a development team and is ranked 10th in the world while the women's team is No.2.

Pulver says rugby needs to dangle a sevens gold medal in front of school students to convince them to play the sport rather than AFL or rugby league.