New Zealand rugby sevens coach Gordon Tietjens has challenged his young players to stand up in the Wellington tournament, which is underway, if they want to be a contender for the Olympics.
Tietjens has five players who have never played in the Wellington leg of the World Series before.
He decided not to select the likes of veterans Tomasi Cama and Lote Raikabula, while Tim Mikkelson was ruled out of the tournament because of injury.
Tietjens says he has confidence in his young players and he's hung the Olympic carrot out in front of them as extra motivation.
Meanwhile skipper DJ Forbes says poor ticket sales for the event won't have an impact on the home side's chances.
Thousands of people lined the streets of the capital Friday to welcome all 16 teams in the annual parade before the tournament kicks off this afternoon.
Forbes says he's confident the party atmosphere will continue, despite the 14,000 tickets that are still unsold.
Defending Wellington champions New Zealand take on Canada, Papua New Guinea, and England in pool play.
New Zealand, who are also the defending World Series champions, are currently third in the overall standings behind South Africa and Fiji.