Cape Town - South Africa's Sevens coach Paul Treu has welcomed the news that more countries would be able to feature in future World Series events. This follows the announcement by the International Rugby Board (IRB) of a new qualification pathway for the popular Series as the sport continues to build towards its Olympic Games re-inclusion in 2016. According to the IRB the number of core teams that participate in each of the events on the World Series will increase from 12 to 15 for the 2012/13 Series. This year’s Hong Kong Sevens on 23-25 March, which is the only event on the calendar to feature 24 teams, will double as the qualification tournament. Three teams will advance from a dedicated 12-team regional qualifier finale, securing coveted core team status and joining the current core teams - Argentina, Australia, England, Fiji, France, Kenya, New Zealand, Samoa, Scotland, South Africa, USA, Wales - in competing across all events in the 2012/13 Series. “I think it is fantastic news for Sevens Rugby. The sport is growing at a tremendous pace across the globe, attracting new fans and participants to the game. What it means for us is that we will have to continue to attract and recruit new players to strengthen our core squad, because other countries will fund Sevens Rugby on a larger scale because of the prospect of Series titles and Olympic participation,” said Treu.