Argentina ready to receive WUC Sevens flag for 2020 event
A look back at some of the most memorable storylines that didn’t get told during the World University Rugby Sevens Championship.
SWAKOPMUND, NAMIBIA – With the 8th edition of the FISU World University Championships Rugby Sevens in Namibia officially over, attention now shifts to the competition’s next host Argentina, where the 9th edition of the tournament will be held in 2020.
Emiliano Gordin, who will the Technical Director for the next edition that will be hosted in the Argentine city of La Plata, was in Swakopmund for the recently-concluded World University Rugby Sevens Championship to observe the running of the event, and says he had a fantastic time at the tournament’s first appearance in an African country, while gaining a lot of knowledge from the FISU organisers present at the tournament.
“We had a fantastic week here in Namibia,” Gordin said. “While here I was on a special task to see how to organise and how to improve on things. We hope these ideas will continue in Argentina, so we can continue working to organise the best world championships ever.
“The FISU technical committee here know a lot, and have a lot of experience, so it was really important to be here and to talk with them and learn from the other FISU delegates from Rugby Sevens. It was a great experience.”
As was the case for Namibia, the 9th edition is also hosted by a new country for the first time, as Argentina prepare to welcome the world to their shores.
“I would like to thank FISU for giving us the possibility of having a new world championship,” Gordin continued. “Firstly it’s a big challenge, as many nations across the world haven’t been down to South America – maybe to Brazil, but not to Argentina – so it’s a big challenge to organise.
“It will be the first university championship in the history of our county, so it’s very big. I will be the director, so it will be a big honour for me. I am really happy that we received the trust from our president. And we will work hard to make sure everyone feels at home.”
Gordin says planning for the 2020 event began in September 2017, with the organising team already brainstorming a number of ideas that will get many of the local citizens involved to make it a tournament to remember.
“We already have a team together that started planning from September last year, and we are working with the Ministry of Education,” he says. “La Plata is a very big city. The national university of La Plata has 130 000 students, so it’s a very big university, and all the people of the city are waiting.
“Our aim is to have every child from all the schools in La Plata to be able to go to the stadium and watch the matches, and we want to do the same with the local rugby clubs – there are 100 rugby clubs in the city with a lot of players, so the idea is that on the Thursday and Friday, the school children will be brought to the matches, while on Saturday, the players from the different rugby clubs can come and watch too. So we are working had towards this idea, and hope we can do it.”
Gordin adds that his organising team has an International Relations Director who will be communicating with national university federations across the world to invite them to the Games, where he hopes for an improvement on the five women’s and eleven men’s teams that participated in Namibia.
Gordin says the people of La Plata are already looking forward to the event, which he feels will be beneficial for not only the city, but the entire country of Argentina as well.
“It will not only be good for the city, but also for our national university sport federation,” he says. “Other universities from other cities are already writing to us, asking if they can work with us in organising the World University Championships. So they have already indicated their interest to get involved as well.”
With preparation already well under way for La Plata 2020, the WUC Rugby Sevens tournament in two years’ time looks set to be a competition not to be missed.