The International Rugby Board (IRB) and Scottish Rugby today announced the pools and schedule for the Emirates Airline Edinburgh 7s 2007, which will be held at Murrayfield on 2 and 3 June.
The draw features all 12 core teams - Scotland, Fiji, Samoa, New Zealand, South Africa, England, France, Australia, Kenya, Canada, Argentina and Portugal - as well as four sides invited to the last two legs â€“ Wales, Italy, Russia and Georgia.
On day one, the opening match between Samoa and Wales kicks off at 9.12am on the international pitch at the home of Scottish rugby while the top two seeds from each pool battle it out in the last four matches of the day, culminating in clash between hosts Scotland and South Africa (kick off 5.58pm).
On day two, the quarter-finals of the Bowl set the day running with the first match at 10.45am while the Cup quarters get under way at 12.13pm. The day ends with the finals of the Shield (5.22pm), Bowl (5.50pm) and Plate (6.18pm) before the grand finale Cup final kicks off at 6.46pm.
IRB Tournament Operations Manager Beth Coalter said: "This season's Series has been so competitive with the first four titles going to different countries and that means the overall winner will not be known until the very last day at Murrayfield. It's a fitting end to the season in Scotland, the third new venue on the Series this year and the home of Sevens rugby."
Emirates Airline Edinburgh 7s ambassador and Scottish Rugby President Andy Irvine said: "Having seen the draw I am certain we are in for two fantastic days of rugby sevens. The top teams in each pool are still in with a chance of lifting the Series title at our event so it'll be a highly competitive weekend.
"All the teams will be aiming to take points for this event and, looking at the draw and the Series results to date, there is every chance of a few upsets over the course of the weekend. I wish all the teams success in their preparations and look forward to welcoming them to Scotland in the coming weeks," he added.
The Series has seen its share of upsets so far and the rule of thumb in the XVs game does not always apply in the abbreviated version. In the opening tournament in Dubai, Portugal beat Australia 12-10 before the latter went on to win 19-14 over Series holders Fiji later that day.
Also in Dubai, Wales ran out 17-14 winners over Samoa before the islanders beat eventual finalists New Zealand 10-7 on the same day. Rugby minnows Tunisia beat Argentina 24-12 in Dubai and a week later triumphed 21-12 over Australia in South Africa. Anything could happen when the finale rolls into Edinburgh in June.
In the final leg, the Scots have been drawn against current fourth place side South Africa, who lifted the Emirates Airline Dubai Sevens title in December with a 31-12 win over New Zealand in the Cup final. Completing the pool are Canada and Hong Kong Sevens Bowl-winners, Russia.
Commenting on today's draw, Scotland 7s head coach Stephen Gemmell said: "We are in a position just now to finish in our highest ever position in an IRB Sevens World Series campaign.
"First up, we play Russia, who are a big physical side and have a good structure to their game. Canada have a young squad, but have had some close games against some of the top teams so they will pose a significant threat to us.
"South Africa are an exciting prospect for us as we have faced them twice before but have yet to bag that win, something I believe we are capable of," he added.
Looking forward to rounding off this year's campaign at Murrayfield, Gemmell added: "At every event around the world, the crowd have given a tremendous support for the home team. I've no doubt that everyone in the stands at Murrayfield will back our team and I hope that we will be able to put in some performances to merit their vocal support."
Scotland 7s captain Scott Forrest said: "Playing the final leg of the series at Murrayfield is an ideal finish to what has been a very positive season for the squad.
"There is a bit of added pressure and some butterflies in the stomach that comes with playing in front of a home crowd and inside the national stadium, but that is what you want as a player - a great setting with fantastic support.
"I've played at Murrayfield before, most recently in the sevens demonstration game during the half-time break in the Six Nations game against Ireland. It's an awesome feeling running out in front of a crowd that's really up for it.
"Murrayfield is a great stadium and I'm sure the experience of playing there in the final event on the IRB World Sevens Series will live with all the boys for a long time,' he added
For all the latest news on the event and to purchase tickets for the Emirates Airline Edinburgh 7s, visit www.edinburgh7s.com
Pool A - Fiji, Australia, Kenya, Portugal
Pool B - Samoa, France, Wales, Italy
Pool C - South Africa, Scotland, Canada, Russia
Pool D - New Zealand, England, Argentina, Georgia
Samoa v Wales
France v Italy
Fiji v Kenya
Australia v Portugal
New Zealand v Argentina
England v Georgia
South Africa v Canada
Scotland v Russia (11.46am)
Samoa v Italy
France v Wales
Fiji v Portugal
Australia v Kenya
New Zealand v Georgia
England v Argentina
South Africa v Russia
Scotland v Canada (2.52pm)
Wales v Italy
Kenya v Portugal
Argentina v Georgia
Canada v Russia
Samoa v France
Fiji v Australia
New Zealand v England
South Africa v Scotland (5.58pm)
1/4 finals Bowl - 3rd Pool A v 4th Pool B (Match 25) 10.45am
1/4 finals Bowl - 3rd Pool D v 4th Pool C (Match 26)
1/4 finals Bowl - 3rd Pool C v 4th Pool D (Match 27)
1/4 finals Bowl - 3rd Pool B v 4th Pool A (Match 28)
1/4 finals Cup - 1st Pool A v 2nd Pool B (Match 29)
1/4 finals Cup - 1st Pool D v 2nd Pool C (Match 30)
1/4 finals Cup - 1st Pool C v 2nd Pool D (Match 31)
1/4 finals Cup - 1st Pool B v 2nd Pool A (Match 32)
SF Shield - Loser Match 25 v Loser Match 26 (Match 33)
SF Shield - Loser Match 27 v Loser Match 28 (Match 34)
SF Bowl - Winner Match 25 v Winner Match 26 (Match 35)
SF Bowl - Winner Match 27 v Winner Match 28 (Match 36)
SF Plate - Loser Match 29 v Loser Match 30 (Match 37)
SF Plate - Loser Match 31 v Loser Match 32 (Match 38)
SF Cup - Winner Match 29 v Winner Match 30 (Match 39)
SF Cup - Winner Match 31 v Winner Match 32 (Match 40)
Shield Final - Winner Match 33 v Winner Match 34 (Match 41)
Bowl Final - Winner Match 35 v Winner Match 36 (Match 42)
Plate Final - Winner Match 37 v Winner Match 38 (Match 43)
Cup Final - Winner Match 39 v Winner Match 40 (Match 44) 6.46pm