Women's Sevens series hailed by NZRU boss

The introduction of a women's Rugby Sevens world series has been applauded by the New Zealand Rugby Union (NZRU).

The International Rugby Board unveiled details about the tournament on Friday, comprising four tournaments to be held in Dubai (Nov 30-Dec 1), Houston (Feb 1-2), Guangzhou (March 30-31) and Amsterdam (May 17-18).

NZRU chief executive Steve Tew said the series was an important commitment to international women's rugby.

He said the tournaments would be an important part of the planning ahead of New Zealand's tilt for a gold medal at Rio de Janeiro in 2016, where Sevens Rugby will debut at the Olympic Games.

The series will feature 20 teams, using a format similar to the men's, which has been running for 13 years.

Each 12-team event will feature six core teams who will play across all four events and six teams who will be invited based on regional tournament rankings.

New Zealand is one of six core teams in the inaugural series alongside Australia, Canada, England, the Netherlands and the United States.

A New Zealand squad will assemble with coach Sean Horan for a training camp in Auckland next month as they prepare for the Dubai tournament.