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Pools confirmed for Rio 2016

Sean Willis

World Rugby     29 Jun 2016     Sean Willis

Gordon Tietjens' men's side takes top seed in Pool C and will play Great Britain, Kenya and Japan. Sean Horan's women's side have been drawn in Pool B along with France, Spain and Kenya.

Elsewhere in the men's competition, favourites Fiji have been drawn in Pool A with defending Olympic champions USA, as well as South American rivals Argentina and Brazil. Pool B is another tough group, which includes South Africa, Australia, France and Spain.

In the women's event, number-one seed and reigning HSBC World Rugby Women's Sevens Series champions Australia headline Pool A, along with USA, Fiji and Colombia. Pool C includes the much-fancied Canada and Great Britain teams as well as home favourites Brazil and Japan.

In both competitions, the top two teams from each pool, plus the two best third-placed sides, progress to the quarter-finals.

Women's - 6-8 August (seeding in brackets) Pool A: Australia (one), USA (six), Fiji (seven), Colombia (12) Pool B: New Zealand (two), France (five), Spain (eight), Kenya (11) Pool C: Canada (three), Great Britain (four), Brazil (nine), Japan (10)

Men's - 9-11 August (seeding in brackets) Pool A: Fiji (one), USA (six), Argentina (seven), Brazil (12) Pool B: South Africa (two), Australia (five), France (eight), Spain (11) Pool C: New Zealand (three), Great Britain (four), Kenya (nine), Japan (10)

Speaking at the draw, World Rugby Chairman Bernard Lapasset said: "Today's announcement represents another exciting milestone on rugby sevens' road to Rio 2016. Confirmation of the pools bring the competitions to life and add a further injection of excitement for teams and fans alike.

"We were determined to return rugby to the Olympic Games because we knew inclusion would be game-changing for our sport. We knew it would open the door to reach and inspire new participants and fans worldwide and enable our top men's and women's players to realise their dreams of becoming Olympians, competing alongside the greatest athletes in the world. That dream is now very much a reality and we are excited and honoured to be back on sport's greatest stage.”

The New Zealand Men's and Women's Olympic Sevens squads will be named this Sunday in Auckland.