Only three weeks after Italy hosted a successful IRB Junior World Championship, 12 invitational teams will this weekend flock to the north eastern resort of Lignano Sabbiadoro for the International Super Beach 5’s Rugby Cup.
“The Lignano International Cup has become an annual celebration of all that is great about Beach Rugby, its players and its supporters,” said Tournament Director Cesare Zambelli. “Every year we always try to add a little something new to enhance both the playing and viewing experience.
“This year, for the first time, we will introduce live streaming through our website. Even though our Beach Rugby family is small, it is growing steadily and we have many avid supporters around the globe. For those who can’t be here with us, we want to bring them a taste of some live action.
“Rugby roots in this part of Italy grow deep under both soil and sand. This is a region where rugby heritage is both proud and innovative. With International Super Beach 5's we are proudly promoting a fast paced, high scoring, end-to-end rugby experience. To the unitiated or inexperienced, its simplicity is its strength.”
The 11th edition of the tournament takes place on the golden sands of Lignano Beach on Saturday and Sunday with select squads from New Zealand, the Pacific Islands and Tonga as well as club sides from Italy, France, England, Ireland, Wales, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and Croatia.
One of the newcomers this year are Lansdowne FC with captain Greg Stafford excited about the “unique opportunity” for the Irish club to play in the tournament.
“For a traditional Rugby club like Lansdowne, with 140 years of history on grass, playing at Lignano 2011 really will be breaking new ground,” said Stafford. “We're delighted to have been selected to play.
“For all the players, the idea of representing both your club and country at the same time, on sand, and against the best in European Beach Rugby, well it's such a unique opportunity, so we're up for the challenge and looking forward to the legendary Lignano Beach Rugby experience.”