Thursday, June 23, 2016

Samoa 7s not making the Olympics is a big deal. And here's why

A dejected Samoan 7s player moments after the final whistle. 

Samoa - who won the Paris leg of the World Series and who finished 9th overall in the World Series - will not be at this year's Rio Olympics, itself a landmark event in the history of the sport. 

Samoa ultimately lost out last weekend in the last Olympic Repechage event in Monaco to an unfancied Spain side. Sport can be a cruel mistress and it doesn't come much crueller than Spaniards last minute try to claim the last remaining Olympic spot. 

Spain of course can only be applauded. They did not compete in this year's World Series and haven't since the 2012/13 season. They rank at 16th in the all time World Series standings. 

Samoa have never won an Olympic medal, and the sport of rugby 7s presents maybe their best chance of over turning that grim statistic. One has to question how it came to be that Samoa were left at the mercy of one final Repechage competition.  Of course one of the charms of the 7 man game is that any team can win on any given day. Yet, one thing is certain, the Rio games will be a less colourful place without Samoa there.  

CREDIT: World Rugby