Worldsport

Rugby for cowboys, ancient greeks and men dressed as nuns

Updated 5:58 AM ET, Fri December 20, 2013
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Fans don blue paint and Avatar costumes at the Wellington Rugby Sevens tournament. Dressing up in costume has become a cult activity at sevens events the world over. Ross LandGetty Images/File
The IRB Rugby Sevens Series hosts mini tournaments in nine seperate cities around the world. Here, fans pose for pictures in Dubai. Francois Nel/Getty Images/File
It's not always the fans who enforce the fancy dress code. In this image, Japanese players salute the crowd at the Hong Kong Rugby Sevens in 1990. David Rogers/Getty Images/File
Even the referees have been known to get in on the act, as they did here in Hong Kong in 1989. Russell Cheyne/Getty Images/File
With rugby sevens now officially an Olympic sport, the colorful spectrum of fancy dress costumes will be gracing Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Getty Images
According to former pros like ex-England international, Jason Robinson, sevens can be a fun introduction to rugby. Francois Nel/Getty Images/File
Hello sailor! Spectators' costumes, such as these, just get better and better -- as does the quality of the action on the pitch, says former Rugby World Cup winner Will Greenwood. Richard Huggard/Getty Images/File
Dubai was the host of the November leg of the World Sevens circuit, with Fiji defeating South Africa in the final. Getty Images/File
Here fans are pictured at the Adelaide Rugby Sevens in 2009. Australia hosted the first leg of the 2013-14 season on the Gold Coast, with New Zealand beating the home team in the final in October. Mark Kolbe/Getty Images/File