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In both the women’s and the men’s rugby sevens competitions there will be 12 teams, split into three pools of four for the opening group stages.
The make-up of the pools is determined by the teams being seeded one to 12, based on the points they have accumulated over the past two seasons of the World Rugby Sevens Series, comprising multiple events throughout 2014-15 and 2015-16.
The four teams who qualified directly for the Olympic Games by finishing in the top four positions in the 2014-15 World Rugby Sevens Series are guaranteed a top four seeding, with their position determined by their combined points over the two seasons.
Women’s Olympic Games top four seedings
Men’s Olympic Games top four seedings
Great Britain’s seeding in both competitions is determined by the series points won by nominated team England.
The remaining teams, including host nation Brazil, are ranked five through 12 based on their performance over the past two seasons. The seedings for nations who are not regular teams in the World Rugby Sevens Series have been determined by the international federation based on their performances in series tournaments and also in other World Rugby tournaments over the past two seasons.
The pools for the Olympic Games men's event are as follows:
|Pool A||Pool B||Pool C|
|Fiji||South Africa||New Zealand|
The pools for the Olympic Games women's event are as follows:
|Pool A||Pool B||Pool C|
Each team plays the three other nations in their pool over the first three match sessions with three points for a win, two for a draw and one for a loss.
The best eight teams will then proceed to the first round of knock-out matches, the quarter finals.
Those will be the three teams who top their pool, along with the three teams placed second in each pool and also the two best third-placed teams, based on competition points and then points difference.
The draw for the quarter-finals in both the men’s and women’s competition will then be determined as follows:
|QF1||Winner Pool A v 2nd best 3rd place|
|QF2||Runner-up Pool C v Runner-up Pool B|
|QF3||Winner Pool C v Runner-up Pool A|
|QF4||Winner Pool B v best 3rd place|
The draw for the semi-finals will be determined as follows:
|SF1||Winner QF1 v Winner QF2|
|SF2||Winner QF3 v Winner QF4|