Emirates Airline Edinburgh 7s Boost Scottish Economy By

The arrival of the glittering international 7s circuit in Edinburgh benefited the Scottish economy to the tune of £3 million, it was revealed today.

An economic impact study conducted by Napier University in Edinburgh also showed that 70% of respondents at last June’s Emirates Airline Edinburgh 7s would “definitely” attend another tournament in Edinburgh.

They can seize their chance from today (Wednesday 28 Nov) as tickets go on sale for the 2008 tournament, which will be staged at Murrayfield on 31 May and 1 June.A whole host of attractive ticket packages – which are only available to those who buy in advance – were launched today.  A two-day adult ticket costs £25; a two-day concessions ticket (for OAPs, students and under-18s) costs just £7.50; and a family ticket (two adults and two children) costs £50 for two days and £30 for one day.  Supporters opting now for these great value packages won’t pay a booking fee. A one-day adult ticket at £15 and one-day concessions ticket at £5 are also on sale.

Tickets can be bought through the official website www.edinburgh7s.com or via the Scottish Rugby ticket hotline 0131 346 5100, which is open 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday.

Last season more than 29,000 spectators attended the inaugural two-day event, which was the culmination of the IRB World Series 7s.  New Zealand won at Murrayfield and thus lifted the overall IRB title.

The economic impact study interviewed 641 spectators over the two days and concluded that the event was worth £3,165,866 to the Scottish economy, more than £2 million of which was spent in the Edinburgh area.

Gordon McKie, chief executive of Scottish Rugby, welcomed the findings.  He said: “The study makes encouraging reading. Some 98% of respondents said they would either definitely or probably attend another tournament in Edinburgh, while some 70% considered Murrayfield an excellent venue.

“Our job now, working with our partners at the IRB, VisitScotland and EventScotland and our sponsors, Emirates Airline and Martin Currie (who will support the Festival of Rugby on the back pitches) is to make the 2008 Emirates Airline Edinburgh 7s even more memorable and draw more fans to enjoy two days of high-octane, top-class sport.”

The survey also showed that the crowd was younger than attended Six Nations matches at Murrayfield with nearly two thirds of those surveyed under-35.

McKie added: “7s is a great way to introduce people to rugby.  There’s more space, more action and more fun. We look forward to welcoming supporters to Murrayfield for next year’s tournament.”

Meanwhile, the Scotland 7s squad, sponsored by Murray, have arrived safely in Dubai ahead of the first IRB World Series tournament of the season, the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens, which begins on Friday.

Scotland are drawn in the same pool as New Zealand, France and the Arabian Gulf.  Coach Stephen Gemmell said: “We had a run-out against Wales today. The squad’s in good fettle but some got a bit of a wake-up call today.  Those who’ve not been here before realise they need to step up and perform as a team.”