SEVENS: Medals to replace cups
NEWS: World Rugby has made a slight change to the format of the final day's action at each leg of the World Sevens Series to align with the Olympic Games.
The traditional Cup, Plate, Bowl and Shield winners format will be replaced by two competitions. The top two teams in each pool will progress to the Cup competition and the chance to win a gold medal, while lower ranked teams will contest a new Challenge Trophy competition.
The restructure means that each Series event will climax with the 13th-place positional playoff, followed by the Challenge Trophy (ninth place), the fifth-place playoff, bronze medal match and the gold medal match (Cup winners).
The number of matches the teams play across each event remains the same, as does the points distribution.
"Sevens continues to go from strength to strength after a hugely successful Olympic Games debut and we are very much looking forward to what promises to be a very exciting and competitive Series.
"This is the first season within the Tokyo 2020 cycle and therefore the timing of these adjustments makes sense. They are designed to enhance fan understanding of the schedule and format while providing teams with the opportunity to win a medal, as is fitting with an Olympic sport," World Rugby Chairman Bill Beaumont said.
With series anticipation and interest on a high after what was widely regarded as a hugely successful Olympic Games debut, the Series kicks off in Dubai on December 1, before moving to Cape Town, South Africa the following week.