Women's rugby is to be included on the World Sevens circuit for the first time ever from 2009. The International Rugby Board (IRB) has announced that women will have their own Rugby World Cup Sevens, taking place alongside the men's event in the same host city.
The venue for the 2009 tournament is yet to be decided on.
IRB Chairman, Dr Syd Millar said: "To highlight the growth of Sevens, one of the of the key recommendations of the IRB Strategic Plan for women's rugby developed last year was the introduction of a Women's Rugby World Cup Sevens with the aim of providing an elite level of women's Sevens tournament which will raise the profile of the women's game on a global scale.
"It is the first time that there has been a major focus on the women's game and the introduction of an integrated tournament is not just an exciting development for women's rugby, but also Rugby Sevens."
The Rugby World Cup Sevens 2009 will consist of 24 men's and 16 women's teams.