The purpose of this study was to quantify the global match demands of international rugby sevens and to compare the match demands of forwards and backs, and between tournament rounds. To assess the match demands, global positioning system (GPS) and video analysis were collected from 27 international rugby sevens players from the same team across an entire International Rugby Board Sevens World Series season. Differences in running demands and match activities between forwards and backs were mostly trivial and small (ES = 0.05-0.84) while differences in running demands and match activities between Pool and Cup rounds were trivial (ES = 0.001-0.12). Cup round matches showed an increase in long-duration ball-in-play sequences (proportion ratio 0.46). These findings suggest international rugby sevens forwards and backs experience similar match demands while overall match demands remain consistent across tournament rounds.
Keywords: match analysis; mixed-model; rugby sevens; time-motion analysis.