Great Britain's men face uphill task at Singapore SVNS

Singapore hosts the final regular season event of the 2023-24 World Rugby Sevens Series (SVNS) from 3-5 May. The Great Britain men will need a strong performance to avoid missing out on the Grand Final in Madrid at the end of May.

The top eight teams in both the men's and women's series will battle it out for the SVNS title, with the ninth to 12th-placed teams competing in a relegation playoff in the Spanish capital.

New Zealand's victory in Hong Kong last time out saw them join Australia at the top of the women's standings, with the trans-Tasman rivals well clear of the rest. In the men's competition, Argentina lead Ireland by eight points as both teams bid for a first SVNS league winners title.

Much of the attention at the Singapore National Stadium will be focused on the other end of the table where Great Britain could be forced into relegation play-offs in both genders.

The Great Britain men's team, semi-finalists at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games and silver medallists at Rio 2016, currently sit in ninth place. Seven points behind the USA, they need a strong performance to avoid the relegation play-offs in what has been a disappointing season so far, apart from a runners-up finish in Los Angeles in early March.

Speaking about Hong Kong, former Stade Francais Paris back Harry Glover told RugbyPass: "Anybody can beat anybody at the moment. We're always in it with every team, but it's all about the margins. We just have to look back and see where we can improve."

The British men also face missing out on Paris 2024, as they must win the final Olympic qualifier in Monaco in June to secure the final spot. Tokyo 2020 Olympian Glover, who was released by the Stade Francais last June, insisted: "When I was in Paris I could see all the stuff that was going on for the Olympics and it's going to be one hell of a party out there, so fingers crossed we'll be there."

In Singapore, Great Britain have been drawn in Pool C with the USA, Ireland and double Olympic champions Fiji. If they fail to finish top of their group, or as one of the two best third-placed teams, they will go through to the relegation play-offs. Canada have already missed out on the Grand Final with Samoa and Spain likely to follow suit.

New Zealand's men and women celebrate SVNS triumphs in Hong Kong. GETTY IMAGES
New Zealand's men and women celebrate SVNS triumphs in Hong Kong. GETTY IMAGES

Argentina are in what looks a tough Pool A alongside Hong Kong winners New Zealand, Australia and Canada. Pool B is made up of France, South Africa, Spain and Samoa.

On the women's side, Great Britain remains in eighth place, with Brazil just two points behind them. Aside from a third-place finish in Perth in January, both the men's and women's teams have struggled to adapt since Great Britain replaced England, Wales and Scotland in the SVNS series last year.

Great Britain's women have been drawn in Pool C in Singapore with closest rivals Brazil, defending champions Australia and Fiji. New Zealand are in Pool A with Canada, Perth winners Ireland and Spain. Hong Kong runners-up USA are in Pool B with France, Japan and South Africa.