Former head coach of the Men’s Eagles Sevens, Matt Hawkins, and Eagle Carlin Isles took part in the New York stop of the HSBC Rugby Festivals powered by Serevi last week.

Fijian sevens legend Waisale Serevi led the clinics in local schools to give one thousand kids an introduction to the sport of rugby sevens ahead of the sports debut at the Rio 2016 Olympic Summer Games. Brazil, Hong Kong, Canada, Australia, and Dubai are also stops on the HSBC Rugby Festivals powered by Serevi circuit.

“Having not had these same opportunities to get involved in rugby when I was growing up, I am really keen to get involved in the HSBC Rugby Festival to help grow the game in American,” Isles said. “It was exciting to see hundreds of children enjoying playing rugby in New York and I hope many of them will continue to play as I know what a great sport it has been for me.”

At this point in the HSBC Rugby Festival powered by Serevi tour, the programme has reached more than 3,000 children. By then end of the circuit, hundreds of coaches will earn their IRB Level One coaching qualification thanks to the Serevi partnership.

“It is great to see so many kids playing and getting excited about rugby in New York as we help take the game to new audiences in the lead up to the Olympics,” HSBC Holdings plc Global Head of Sponsorship and Events Giles Morgan said. “The HSBC Rugby Festivals offer youngsters the chance to learn rugby from a true legend in Serevi and I’m excited we can bring his enthusiasm and knowledge to new players and communities across the world. HSBC has supported rugby for a long time and helping to grow the sport as we count down to Rio 2016 is a key aim of our investment in the game.”

“As a sport which has been so integral to my life, I’m delighted to have had the opportunity to introduce rugby and give back to so man y children in New York,” Serevi said. “Through the sessions, we hope to not only have helped shaped the future sevens stars but also to provide the youngsters with a great set of values in which to live.”