Now with added cricket…

One of the most popular sporting events in the UAE, the Dubai Rugby Sevens will be making a triumphant return this year, kicking off from December 2 to 4, over the National Day long weekend.

This year, organisers are shaking things up a little, with the announcement that cricket will also feature for the first time.


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In making the announcement, Thomas Burwell, the tournament director, said: “It is with huge excitement that we have the opportunity to announce our 2021 date. We understand from teams and players across the world how excited they are to return to the desert this coming December.”

Interspersing cricket among the traditional football fixtures promises something for everyone, for players and spectators alike. “The addition of cricket is very exciting as more sports men, women, boys and girls will get the chance to take part in this iconic tournament. Cricket will bring its own flavour and showcase the facilities of The Sevens Stadium,” said Burwell.

“We are also very happy to be returning to our traditional dates on the opening weekend of December, and due to a reformatting of the schedule we will be welcoming an increased number of teams in rugby and netball this year,” he said.

Entries for the invitational tournament open on March 1. Thanks to the new format, organisers are expecting more than 350 teams across the three sports in 2021, with the majority of teams coming from outside the GCC.

The 2020 Dubai Rugby Sevens were cancelled for the first time in the tournament’s 50-year history, amid the global pandemic.

Historically, the Emirates Airline Rugby Sevens have been a riotous combination of on-the-field excitement and off-the-pitch entertainment, with huge headlining acts.

Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens, The Sevens Stadium, Dubai, Thursday December 2 to Saturday December 4.