The weekend of the 2-3 July saw Luxembourg Rugby’s senior 7s team compete over two days in Rugby Europe Sevens competition in Bourgas, Bulgaria, in which Luxembourg were grouped with Croatia, Turkey, Norway and hosts Bulgaria.
The first game saw a slow start against Croatia, but the Red Lions came out on top winning 15-7. The second game saw Luxembourg pitted against hosts Bulgaria, here they powered to a 38-10 victory with crowd favourite Adrian Timmermans picking up two tries. The final game of day won saw Luxembourg hammer Norway 28-5 to escape the group stages of the competition and qualify for the knockout rounds on the Sunday.
Day two kicked off with a disappointing performance against Turkey, but it was enough for the Red Lions to eke out a 26-15 victory with Christopher Rossa successfully gathering a mesmerising chip-and-chase in the closing moments of the game.
Coming out the group stages as the tops seeds, Luxembourg were pitted against Serbia for not only a place in the final, but for promotion to the tier above of the Rugby Europe’s Sevens Trophy. Two tries from Scott Browne, and another two from Yared Ketema, saw Luxembourg thrash the Serbs 38-7.
All was then set up for a crunch final against Croatia. The game was a thriller and was neck and neck until just after half time with Croatia ahead 19-14. However, the final quarter of the game saw Croatia up the pressure and pull ahead to win 43-14, leaving Luxembourg as the runner-up.
Adrian Timmermans proved Luxembourg’s silver bullet with 7 tries throughout the tournament. With promotion, Luxembourg will compete next year in the Rugby Europe Men’s trophy alongside the likes of Romania, Sweden and Czech Republic in the second tier of European Rugby Sevens.
Team Captain Maxime Dozin was full of praise for his squad and support staff ”The tournament was a lot of fun, it’s great to be part of a team that can punch above its weight in such a way, we look forward to the next challenge and taking Luxembourg Rugby to even greater heights”.
With the end of the 7s season, focus now moves back to the 15-a-side format of the game, a format in which Luxembourg were also promoted last season following a grand slam campaign.