The Australian Women’s Rugby Sevens team made history recently as our first national team to win the sport’s World Series. Now, the team has shifted its focus to the upcoming Olympics where Rugby sevens will feature for the first time. Will they take home gold? Well they’re going in pretty confident.
Australia, meet your latest sporting superstars!
Ellia Green is just one member of the Pearls, Australia’s new World Series-winning Rugby Sevens’ team. But strangely, she only ended up in the sport by accident. Ellia was just giving her cousin a lift to training, when she decided to give it a crack herself.
ELLIA GREEN: I went there and thought it was really cool, because I like tackling, I’m not afraid of the contact, I’m pretty rough with my brother, I’m not afraid to hit him, a time or two, ha ha, so it wasn’t so much the contact thing, but I was nervous about it all and everything but there’s no way I would ever picture myself in my shoes today.
REPORTER: So what can we expect from Ellia Green?
ELLIA GREEN: Look, this is what you can expect from Ellia Green, you going to expect power, speed, and you’re going to expect a good time, and a laugh on the field, because I’m here for the entertainment as well.
If Ellia ever gets sick of rugby, it’s only a matter of time before her rapping career takes off too.
ELLIA GREEN: The G Train or Green machine are just a few of my names, Rugby 7s that’s my main game, I play on the wing cos i like to run fast, used to be on the track but that’s in my past. Yo.
But you might be wondering, what is Rugby Sevens? Well, it’s basically a quicker version of Rugby Union. The key stuff is the same, like only being able to throw sideways or backwards, and tries are still worth 6 points.
But regular games are a lot shorter; just 14 minutes instead of 80, and instead of it being 15 a-side, teams are just 7 a-side on the same size pitch. That means players have way more room to move, which means a lot more tries.
For example, during the 2015 Rugby Union World Cup tries were scored on average every 28 minutes. But in the Sevens season that same year, it was once every 3 minutes!
Now that Ellia and the gang are Rugby Sevens world champs there’s still one huge challenge left for them in 20-16, winning Olympic Gold. For the first time ever, Rugby Sevens will feature at the Olympic Games and the Pearls will be hoping to etch their name into the history books once again.
ELLIA GREEN: I think it’s just a lifelong dream for a lot of us. It’s been my dream since I was five years old I think, and I’ve had pictures of Olympians on my wall in my mum’s home in Melbourne, just thinking about Rio is thinking about a lifelong accomplishment.