Welcome back to Moscow! There is just one day to go to the start of the opening day of Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013! Today is the final day of training for the men's teams who begin tomorrow, while the women's teams have two full days of training action before they begin on Saturday. Follow us live here all day as we bring you the best of the news from around the teams and the training grounds!

Federico Oliveira, Portugal captain
Federico Oliveira takes a break from training in a hot and humid Moscow. Photo: IRB/Martin Seras Lima

Below is a tweet from Russian player Denis Simplikevich

It's a picture of his daughter and the words: "Daddy, I believe in you ..."


Stephen Gemmell, Scotland Men's coach, on the team's preparations:

“The week here in Moscow has gone really well and our accuracy and intensity has lifted everyday as we approach tomorrow’s opening match v Japan.

“We’re ready to go and are in a good place. The players know what they need to do. They know the calls, they know the passages of play and they know how they’re capable of performing.

“All that is left to do is go out there at 7.36pm (local time) tomorrow and apply ourselves.”


Put a face to a name! Here are the commentators taking part at #RWC7s in Moscow...


TV commentators
Karl Te Nana, Scott Hastings, Nigel Starmer-Smith, Wyn Gruffydd and Keith Quinn will be commentating this weekend at the Rugby World Cup Sevens.


Uruguay training
Uruguay train in the 34 degrees heat in Moscow ahead of the RWC Sevens. Photo: Martin Seras Lima

Fantastic spirit between the teams here at the Luzhniki stadium as Brazil and Japan train together...


Brazil and Japan women training
Brazil and Japan women in training ahead of the Rugby World Cup Sevens in Moscow. Photo: Judy Teasdale



Kyle Brown, returning from injury to captain South Africa: "It is very impressive here, it is an incredible setting. It's been frustrating watching the team this season. I spent so much time on my couch screaming at the team, but I am hoping I can join the team and add a bit of value to it. It is going to be a physical tournament, but it is more about the mental strength to be able to perform on demand, three days in a row."


We caught up with USA star Carlin Isles...

Carlin Isles, USA: "Moscow is great, and I feel very happy and am very excited to get out onto the pitch at the Olympic Stadium and show what I, and what we as a team, can do. I can't wait,"

Final preperation for Alexander Yanyuskin the captain of the Men's Russian team, as he does some final kicking practice...


Alexander Yanyuskin, Russia captain
Russia captain Alexander Yanyuskin kicks during a training session at Luzhniki Stadium as we hit one day to go until RWC Sevens 2013 kicks off. Photo: Judy Teasdale.


Olympic bodsled champion Heather Moyse makes a break for Canada women in their training match with Spain in Moscow. Photo: Judy Teasdale.



A great shot of Colin Hawley, Zack Test, Carlin Isles and Matt Hawkins taking part in a live Twitter Q&A with their fans ahead of Rugby World Cup Sevens! Photo: Michael Lee/USA Rugby.


USA Sevens' Carlin Isles says the Luzhniki Stadium is a special setting for Rugby World Cup Sevens 2013.
England coach Ben Ryan reflects on the pain of their World Cup loss in 2009 and look ahead to the tournament in Moscow this weekend.

Australia women's coach Chris Lane has been talking about the challenge of defendng their World Cup Sevens title.

This is almost a completely new squad to that which won it in 2009. We’ve been focused on this tournament for 18 months and we’ve put a squad together that we believe will be competitive. Everything over the past 18 months has been aimed at this tournament and we’ve seen our experienced players put their hands up and this new generation of players grab the opportunity that’s been given to them.


All 40 captains from the competing teams at Rugby World Cup Sevens gathered in Red Square to launch the tournament in Moscow yesterday. Take a look back at the video!



It's been a busy day here in Moscow with 40 teams turning out at Red Square for the captains' photo and we've also had two Twitter Q&As with the hosts Russia and USA. We'll be back tomorrow, as we edge closer to the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens

Get your questions in now to the USA 7s lads. The hashtag to use is #ASKUS7s

New Zealand and Scotland men training together

New Zealand and Scotland men training together at at the Luzhniki Complex on 26 June.
Photo: Judy Teasdale

The Hong Kong and Tonga men's teams training together
The Hong Kong and Tonga men's teams training together

She's been a fiered oppoenent in the Women's Sevens World Series this seaon and she'll be appearing in the #RWC7s this weekend in Moscow...


Baizat Khamidova - Russia

Russia women's player Baizat Khamidova during a training session at the Luzhniki Complex on 26 June.
Photo: Judy Teasdale



Kyle Brown, South Africa (on being injured this season): "Incredibly frustrating, I told Frankie I spent so much time on my couch screaming at him and just being so incredibly happy for them, the whole season they have just shown some rugby they are able to play and I am hoping I can join the team and add a bit of value to it."


Jen Kish, Canada captain: "We are not just coming here to compete. We are coming to win. We spent three years working towards this tournament so if you don’t want to win why would you be here. We have a good shot with the staff and the team we have here."


England captain Rob Vickerman said: "It is huge, we had Damian Hopley come in before we left for camp and just the whole legacy of it is outstanding thing to hear as a rugby player, let alone as an England rugby player, that there is this full history steeped, from 1973 with the likes of Andy Ripley playing for England in what was a kind of unofficial World Cup and then again 1993 with the likes of Harriman, Hopley, Dallaglio, Dawson, Nick Beal, these real big names of rugby that have gone on to bigger and better things almost saying that this is one of their true highlights playing in a World Cup. So for us, doing the maths on it, potentially it does weigh in our favour with 1973, 1993 and this year but it is something that is definitely in our mindset and also now on our sleeve which is a fantastic thing to see."


Nathan Hirayama, Canada captain: "It is really nice, a pleasure to be captain, an honour. We are really looking forward to this weekend, it's something we have been looking forward to since for the past year and a half since we qualified, so we are really excited to be here and hopefully we show up."


We caught up with some of the captains following the Rugby World Cup Sevens launch in the Red Square. Check out what some of them had to say...

Brazil are aiming to capitalise on the exposure the women's game will get in the lead-up to the Olympics on their home soil in Rio in 2016.

France women's sevens player Jade Le Pesq after training this morning: "We worked together for four weeks and played in London after Amsterdam. We can see a big difference from the first tournament at the start of the season and the last one.

"We don’t have an easy pool but I think we can do very well. We’ve worked hard over the last two months so we’re just going to play our game, have fun and do our best."

Russia women's sevens coach Pavel Baranovsky takes his team through a training session at the Luzhniki Complex today.

Photo: Judy Teasdale



On the bus on the way to the capt's photo in Red Square - Fiji captain Lepani Botia: "I am very happy with my team, I love the boys. We know Fiji won in 1997 and 2005 and we have won this year on the Series in Australia and Hong Kong. We are always looking forward though and we hope to win."


Spain's men's captain Pablo Feijoo, who has played this "long World Series with a lot of pressure is looking ahead to a knock out tournament where they can enjoy rugby. It is not about points, it is a one off tournament and anything can happen!"


The captains of all 40 teams competing in the men's and women's tournaments at RWC Sevens are on their way to Red Square in the centre of Moscow for a photo shoot. Photos coming soon!


China women's sevens Liu Yan after training today: "It was fantastic to host the third round of the women’s sevens world series in Guangzhou but we were disappointed with our performance and we had a few injuries to key players.

"It’s going to be a very competitive tournament and we’ll be targeting the bowl final. We’d be happy with that."

We'll have pics and the full article soon...


Brett Gosper, IRB CEO at the RWC Sevens press conference: "One of the great things about RWC Sevens in the past has been its extraordinary level of competitiveness. There are many genuine contenders in the men’s and women’s competitions. It will be compelling viewing."


Brett Gosper, IRB CEO at the RWC Sevens press conference: "Our sincerest thanks go to the RUR, Russian Government, City of Moscow Government for their superb organisation of this event. 

"Also the participating teams, match officials, fans from all corners of the world, commercial partners (Bank Zenit, AIG, Jeep), media and last but by no means least the volunteers for playing their part in what will be remembered as an outstanding Rugby World Cup Sevens."


And don't forget too that the USA men's team are doing a live Twitter chat at 6pm Moscow time / 10am EDT / 7am Pacific today! Hashtag to follow soon. Keep up to date on Twitter @irbsevens



Don't forget that we will be doing a live Twitter chat with Ireland women's sevens tomorrow at 6pm Irish time. Keep a look out on Twitter @irbwomens for pics and videos of their day today and get ready to send in your questions. hashtag announced later!

Netherlands women in training ahead of RWC Sevens. The training facilities in the Luzhniki Complex are top-notch.



Today is a busy day of preparation. The team managers' meeting has already taken place. Later on there will be a press conference, followed by the captain's photo in Red Square.

That's in addition to the 40 teams fitting in training and gym work. 

Do you remember this one? RWC Sevens 2009 men's Cup quarter between Kenya and Fiji. What a match! Enjoy...
Video Play Video



That's the end of our coverage on 25 June. We'll be back on 26 June for more live buildup to #RWC7s


Some of the teams have been enjoying a day off from training today, others have been in the gym, the pool and training with other nations. It's a wonderful atmosphere here in Moscow at the moment and we're all as excited as the players for the start of the tournament on Friday! Join us tomorrow for more from Russia....

One of Russia's stars has been named in our seven to watch for the women's tournament, but who else do we think will star in Moscow? Let us know who you think wlll star using #RWC7s and we will use the best on here!



Carlin Isles, Rugby's fastest player is apparently not as fast in the pool: "Haha, that was supposed to be a secret."


Dutch team training over on pitch number five at the moment here at the Luzhniki Stadium. It's been a busy day with nearly all the teams having a hit out ahead of the weekend. And here they are....


It certainly is hot in Moscow at the moment! But there was also some thunder and lightning earlier on today. Conditions set to be great for the weekend!

And is Kelly Brazier your IRB Women's Sevens Player of the Year? Let us know your thoughts at #IRBAwards


Is Dan Norton, the World Series' top try scorer, your IRB Sevens Player of the Year? VOTE NOW at facebook.com/irbsevens

If you want a reminder of the nominees, here they are. There are eight mens nominated:

William Ambaka, Afa Aiono, Cornal Hendricks, Frankie Horne, Gillies Kaka, Tim Mikkelson, Dan Norton and Joji Raqamate

And in the women's....

Kelly Brazier, Jen Kish, Kayla McAllister, Emily Scarratt and Kelly van Harskamp


Don't forget you can still have your say on who you think should win the IRB Sevens and IRB Women's Sevens Player of the Year awards which will be presented this weekend! Head over to facebook.com/irbsevens and facebook.com/irbwomens to vote on the polls!

The Philippines had a training session with the New Zealand team in Moscow ahead of the Rugby World Cup Sevens which they will hope to give them experience when they come to face the likes of Kenya and Samoa on day two of this weekend's play! But can they do it? Let us know at #RWC7s...


Remember this? Why not watch the 2009 inaugural Women's RWC Sevens final again to get you in the mood for this weekend's action!

Video Play Video



Michael Letts who spoke to us after the Philippines hit out agains the New Zealand Sevens: "We like the underdog status so we will go out there enjoy it, have a crack and go down swinging."

Zenit Jeep AIG

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