A different Sevens experience
It was that time of the year again last weekend when rugby (and drinking) fans from around the world descend on Hong Kong for the Sevens, clogging up the island with fancy dress and drunken mischief.
An old chum invited me along to his bank’s box, giving me free rein with all the booze and food I could consume and, of course, easy access to some of the other boxes too. All-you-can-eat curry, endless beers and Pimm’s, and shelter from this year’s downpour meant it was another weekend to remember.
There was a different mood in the hospitality boxes from last year, which was all about stuffy compliance teams keeping a watchful eye on interactions between clients and bankers. But for this Sevens, the number of senior bankers in the boxes had dwindled after rounds of job cuts everywhere, with the result that some of them were packed with juniors.
How they managed to nab tickets beats me, but some places were so rowdy they reminded me of the South Stand — though, thankfully without any missiles of unidentified liquid being thrown around.
I was a bit surprised by all this because, back in my day, holding your alcohol was a key requirement on any CV. Some of these youngsters looked like they needed a lesson in keeping it down.
Luckily, at least one of the chaps appeared to show some self-control, despite being stupidly drunk. Though he could clearly feel the room spinning, he was still quick enough to grab an empty plastic cup as an emergency sick bag, thereby managing (considering the circumstances) to redeem himself a little in the eyes of his superiors.