Rugby Returns to Sam Boyd Stadium - FOX5 Vegas - KVVU

Rugby Returns to Sam Boyd Stadium

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It’s called the toughest weekend in sports, the USA Sevens International Rugby tournament got underway Friday morning.19 different countries represented from rugby teams and even more countries represented in the stands.

“It’s a world championship, it’s a world cup in seven minutes,” said USA fan Rob Herse.

“We have different Kenyans that live in different states around the country, this is the one time we all gather together,” said Roy Wanjohi, a Kenyan fan.

“It’s rugby culture, you play hard, you party hard,” said one Scottish fan. “Rugby is a wonderful sport and that’s just the excuse for why we’re here, so the rugby is fun, but the party is the real thing.”

USA Sevens officials expect more than 80,000 fans over the three-day weekend, a major increase from the 20,000 crowd during the tournament in 2010.

“It’s better than Mardi Gras,” said Fiji fan, Kamlesh Singh.

Beer from different countries, food from different continents. A taste of the world, all in one place.

“It’s diversity, it’s everyone just expressing themselves, it’s Vegas anything goes, look at these girls looking all hot, see,” said Fiji fan Sony Nathaniel.

The weekend isn’t for just those of age, but all ages and families.

“Food, drink, beer and wine everything from all the nations inside playing, we can celebrate their culture outside the stadium as well so it’s not just all rugby all day,” said tournament director John Hinkin.

“We are arch rivals on the field, but when we get here everyone has complete camaraderie, having a great time and just enjoying rugby,” said Nathaniel.

Tournament staff say the economic impact is between $30 - $35 million for the city of Las Vegas.

“Everybody is cheering everybody, they’re really cheering the sport, two teams are playing you may not like one, but they’re cheering the sport,” said Hinkin.

“You’ve got rugby and you’ve got Vegas, and it doesn’t get any better than that does it, so game on.”

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