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Women's competition to join Sydney Sevens

AAP logoAAP 26/08/2016

Australia's Olympic champion women's team will play alongside their male counterparts for the first time on home soil in an expanded Sydney Sevens event in 2017.

After the inaugural men's event in Sydney last season, the women's side will join a three-day tournament from February 3 to February 5 at Allianz Stadium.

Gold medallist Charlotte Caslick said it was a huge boost for the sport following the team's success in Rio.

"It will be awesome to play in front of your home crowd. There's nothing like playing in front of your family and friends," she told AAP.

"We can keep building the momentum that we started this year."

The Australian women's side played three exhibition matches in Sydney this year but it will be the first time the reigning world series champions will compete for tournament points in conjunction with the men.

"Having the women play at the same time as the men is going to make the tournament so much more successful," Australian Rugby Union chief executive Bill Pulver said.

Caslick returned home on Wednesday morning to a red carpet reception at Sydney Airport, and will have a break for a few weeks before training resumes in mid-September.

"It was such an incredible welcome home - got to see my mum and it was all quite emotional," Caslick said.

"The response is amazing for the future of rugby."

Dubai will host the opening leg of the women's sevens on December 1 in Dubai, with one another venue still to be announced.

World Rugby Women's Sevens Series schedule:

Dubai: 1-2 December, 2016

Sydney: 3-5 February, 2017

Kitakyusyu: 22-23 April

Victoria, Canada: 27-28 May

Clermont-Ferrand: 24-25 June

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