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Last Updated: Tuesday, 17 October 2006, 16:00 GMT 17:00 UK
Murrayfield wins IRB Sevens final
SRU chief executive Gordon McKie at Murrayfield
Gordon McKie is delighted Murrayfield will be the host
Scottish Rugby has been successful in its bid to host the world's leading rugby sevens tournament.

A five-year agreement with the International Rugby Board for the IRB Sevens World Series begins in June, with the final leg at Murrayfield.

There had been controversy after plans to host it in Melrose fell through.

But chief executive Gordon McKie said: "We have secured the event for Scotland and remain willing to explore the Melrose option in the future."

The road to the Murrayfield final begins in Dubai in December, moves on to South Africa, New Zealand, the United States, Hong Kong and Australia.

Its penultimate leg is at Twickenham, England, before heading north to Scotland for the climax.
It is fairly well known that we have been keen to take the event to Melrose

SRU chief executive Gordon McKie

"This really is excellent news for Scotland and for sport," said McKie.

"Our priority has always been to win the event for Scotland.

"We can now showcase the international appeal of seven-a-side rugby and hopefully attract many more young Scots to our sport.

"It is fairly well known that we have been keen to take the event to Melrose, where sevens began, and especially for its anniversary year in 2008.

"Unfortunately, we were unable to conclude the necessary financial arrangements with the relevant authorities in the Scottish Borders in time to enable the staging of the IRB tournament there in 2007."

McKie hoped that it might be possible in future years.

"If this is not possible and if it makes sense, we will also be prepared to examine the merits of taking the sevens event to other parts of Scotland other than Murrayfield, after 2007."

Sports Minister Patricia Ferguson was also delighted with the news that the event would be coming to Edinburgh.

"Hosting such a prestigious sporting tournament will not only be a boost to the reputation of Scottish Rugby but will enhance Scotland's international profile," she said.

"Equally importantly, we recognise that successful Scots on a world stage have a positive impact on participation and I am confident that a new generation of young people will be inspired and encouraged by having the tournament on their doorstep."

Last season's IRB Sevens attracted more than 250,000 spectators over the World Series and reached 136 countries through its television coverage.

There were 37 countries taking part in the series, won by Fiji for the first time.

EventScotland chief executive David Williams was pleased to have helped in negotiations in bring the event to Murrayfield and promised to continue working with the SRU to make the event a success.

SEE ALSO
Sevens bid resurrected for 2008
05 Oct 06 |  South of Scotland
Borders' rugby sevens bid anger
27 Sep 06 |  South of Scotland
Scotland want to host Sevens leg
24 Sep 06 |  Scottish


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