Following nine months of pulsating action the men’s HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series 2022 title will be decided in Los Angeles this weekend.
Argentina, Australia, Fiji and South Africa each head into the final tournament of the season with a shot at walking away as champions.
South Africa currently lead the standings with 124 points, two clear of Australia, with Argentina four points further adrift and back-to-back Olympic champions Fiji fourth on 104.
Thanks to the COVID-specific points system that applies to the current season, even fourth-placed Fiji have a real chance of securing the Series title in California.
Each team’s end of season total is calculated by taking their best seven results from across the year.
That means the Fijians would finish the season with 125 points were they to win the tournament in Los Angeles, a tally that would take them above South Africa were the Blitzboks to finish no higher than seventh.
By their own high standards, Fiji made a slow start to the 2022 Series as they finished fourth and eighth at the back-to-back tournaments in Dubai.
Fiji then missed the tournaments in Malaga and Seville but returned with a bang in Singapore, beating the All Blacks Sevens in the final.
Since then, they finished second in Vancouver, won in Toulouse and came third in London. It means that should they claim their third tournament victory in five attempts, they will have a chance of taking the Series title too.
Coach Ben Gollings’ team have been drawn in Pool C and will get their campaign underway against Wales in Los Angeles.
France and Ireland provide their subsequent opposition and the Fijians will target three victories to give themselves as good a chance as possible of overhauling the teams ahead of them in the standings.
“We are just looking [at] creating some opportunity as we then put our focus on the World Cup post Los Angeles Sevens,” Gollings said.
“It’s an exciting team, I’m looking forward to seeing it develop through the week of the LA Sevens.”