South American franchise withdraws from World Tens Series
The inaugural World Tens Series taking place in Bermuda has been dealt a blow with one of the proposed teams being forced to drop out.
Seven out of the eight, SX1O (Cape Town), Asia Pacific Dragons (Singapore), Phoenix (Middle East), London Royals (London), Miami Sun (Florida), Rhinos (Southern California) and Ohio Aviators (Columbus) have been announced already to be competing in the ten-a-side series, starting on Saturday, with the eighth franchise lined up coming from South America.
However, with the global pandemic escalating in the region and the need to respect and protect Bermuda, the decision was taken by all parties to withdraw for this year’s event.
As a result, the format for the series will be adjusted to accommodate the seven franchises participating. Tournaments one and two, taking place across consecutive weekends at North Field, National Sports Centre, now will be a league format, with each team playing each other twice across the weekend.
The team with the most wins across the two series tournaments will win the World Tens League title and be seeded No 1 for the World Tens Series Cup, a knockout play-off format taking place on November 7.
The league title winner and No 1 seed, will receive a bye into the semi-finals, with the remaining six teams competing in a quarter-final round. Two semi-finals and a final will follow where the World Tens Series Cup 2020 will be awarded to the winning team.
The ten-a-side series, comprising privately owned teams from around the globe, features world-class players, and combines both the XV and seven-a-side codes of rugby to create a new form of the sport.
Series organisers have announced that Sky Sports has signed a deal to cover the action taking place in Bermuda. It is the first broadcast partnership to be confirmed, with further announcements in other territories set to follow.
“It is fantastic to be working with a huge broadcast partner in Sky Sports for our World Tens Series events in Bermuda,” said Jon Phelps, the World Tens Series chief executive.
“Having the World Tens broadcast on Sky Sports will allow thousands of rugby fans across the UK the opportunity to see all the action unfold live and via highlights.
“Sky Sports broadcast a number of international rugby tournaments and matches all around the world, so to be added to the portfolio is testament to the hard work of our team in getting this concept to life.”
The ambition is that the World Tens Series will expand to 16 teams in 2021, playing at 12 locations around the world.