England Rugby Sevens (men’s and women’s squads) invite fans to directly support them to get to the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, following drastic England Rugby funding cuts.
On the 1st of September, England Rugby announced that the Sevens teams would have all their funding cut, just 10 months away from the postponed Olympics in Tokyo, due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Players had been working full time and pursuing professional Olympic training schedules up to September 2020, working as delivery drivers, coaches and teachers to keep their dreams alive. The sudden loss of funding represents a serious setback for both teams, but they are determined to pull together and find new ways of keeping their Olympic dreams alive.
The teams have set up an England Rugby Sevens fan page on www.onlinearenas.com where sports fans can pledge support for the teams in exchange for exclusive content, coaching tips and insights into their Tokyo 2021 journey, from the early morning training sessions to the gold medal-winning podium spot.
The squads are crowd funding through Pledge Sports (seeking commercial sponsorship) and have teamed up with tech start up onlinearenas.com. Online Arenas is a sports platform that allows fans to interact directly with sports & fitness professionals. The team’s spokesperson Tom Bowen said,
“The funding cuts though devastating have forced us to be positive and think for ourselves and solve problems off the pitch the way we do when we are on it. The process of going out to find funding is empowering, as is the idea of sharing this journey with our closet supporters.
I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t at least give it my best shot to fund my own programme and I know the other players feel the same. We are asking our fans to be our heroes and we will do everything we can to be theirs. The truth is we cannot do it alone.”
To support the team and help England #SaveOurSevens head over to onlinearenas.com to subscribe.
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