I am writing in response to the article, “Coronavirus outbreak: Hong Kong Rugby Sevens the latest event to be cancelled” (Young Post, February 13).
The 45th edition of the Cathay Pacific/HSBC Hong Kong Sevens was scheduled to take place at Hong Kong Stadium from April 3-5. However, with the coronavirus outbreak in Hong Kong, the tournament has been moved back to October.
The local organisers were ready to hold the annual showpiece, but they were forced to accept World Rugby’s offer to move it back by six months.
The Sevens is one of the most popular sporting events in Hong Kong, with 40,000 fans packing the stadium in So Kon Po on each of the three days. More than half of the spectators come from abroad.
I believe the postponement will help contain the spread of Covid-19 in the city.
Ng Ming-lam, King Ling College
From the Editor
Thank you for your letter, Ming-lam. I think it’s good news for rugby fans around the world that the Hong Kong Sevens has been rescheduled, not cancelled altogether.
It’s a fact that many sporting events, such as the Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon, were either cancelled or postponed because of the novel coronavirus. The Hong Kong Football Association announced it was stopping all competitions until further notice.
Now, the Hong Kong Rugby Sevens – the city’s most iconic tournament – is set for October 16-18, and we hope by that time the virus would have gone away. So we can expect another full house and great entertainment for rugby lovers.
Also, the event being moved from April to October will free up DSE candidates who would otherwise have been heavily involved in the public exam, which begins next month.
More importantly, an increasing number of local students have been showing a keen interest in rugby. The Hong Kong Rugby Union deserves praise for actively promoting the game in the city’s public schools and universities.
There is no doubt that the Hong Kong Rugby Sevens will remain the jewel in the crown of sporting events in the city.
M. J. Premaratne, Sub-Editor