21 Oct 2011

IOC to meet IRB over Sevens qualification

12:43 pm on 21 October 2011

The addition of rugby Sevens to the 2016 Games has presented the International Olympic Committee with an issue of regional qualification versus overall quality.

Four out of seven of the world's top sides are in Oceania but can't all qualify as there'll be only 12 teams playing at the Rio de Janeiro Games in 2016.

The IOC's president Jacques Rogge, who's in Auckland for the Rugby World Cup final and talks with the NZOC, says qualification will be discussed with the International Rugby Board in about a month.

Rogge says he wants teams from all five continents and also the best teams, which may mean in some regions qualifications may be more difficult than the games themselves - but that's a problem they have in all sports.

The IOC president says while there's not enough for time for rugby to be played at the Olympics, Sevens will still benefit the 15-man game.

Rogge played for Belgium as an openside flanker.