The Saints are set to face international opposition when they try to retain their Bury St Edmunds Sevens title this May.
The Saints have won the past two competitions to be held at Bury St Edmunds RFC, which over eight years has become one of the biggest dates on the Sevens calendar. But this year they will have to overcome some top class opposition, with the national squads from both England and Ireland confirmed to take part.
England are preparing for the Rio Olympics, with Ireland now investing in a full Rugby Sevens development programme and targeting qualification for the 2020 Games in the process.
Other teams who have signed up to compete include Worcester Warriors, Newcastle Wailers, Esher, and some of the country’s top invitational sides such as Samurai International, Barracudas, Rambling Jesters and Apache.
“The Bury St Edmunds tournament has been enjoyable to have been a part of over the past few years and we’re looking forward to it again this May,” said Academy manager Dusty Hare. “Mike Robinson and his team put on a great day and the standard of rugby is extremely high.
“The Bury St Edmunds tournament is now one of the highlights of the domestic Sevens calendar and our players will get the opportunity to test themselves against some of the best squads in the country.”
The day will include three concurrent competitions, with an Open tournament for amateur sides and a Women’s tournament running alongside the Elite teams.
“The Bury St Edmunds Sevens is set to be even more impressive than in previous years,” said Michael Robinson, club chairman at Bury St Edmunds RFC. “We’ve got two national squads already confirmed to play and heightened excitement for the sport ahead of its debut in the Rio Olympics this summer.
“We have a phenomenal line-up of teams and top talent taking part, some of whom will be playing for their places in the GB squad to go to the Olympics in August. Sevens Rugby is fast and exhilarating to watch, making it a superb spectator sport, and we look forward to welcoming many thousands of sports fans once again this year.”
Tickets are available in advance and on entry, and Bury St Edmunds RFC is also looking for volunteers to help on the day. For more information head to www.bserufc.co.uk