THE hijack of the Hong Kong Sevens and the targeting of leading Hong Kong players by the proposed Kerry Packer rebel circus has been labelled absurd by a leading local official. Plans to duplicate the popular Hong Kong Sevens by Packer's World Rugby Corporation (WRC) was met with disdain by the chief executive of the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union, Dave Roberts, who said it was 'fanciful'. It was revealed yesterday that WRC's master plan to change the world rugby scene includes duplicating the annual Hong Kong Sevens and the four-yearly 15-a-side World Cup tournaments. In further astounding developments, Hong Kong have been targeted as one of the 'feeder' countries to the WRC's plan to set up three conferences - northern, central and southern - with 10 teams (squads of 30 players) per conference. Hong Kong has been included in the list of countries likely to provide players for the central conference at the lowest of the five-tier player structure. Players at this level will get US$50,000 as a signing-on fee and a further US$50,000 annual income. Roberts was cynical on both counts - of the WRC successfully emulating the Hong Kong Sevens and acquiring top local players. 'As far as I know, no one has been approached,' said Roberts. And on the topic of established tournaments like the Hong Kong Sevens and the World Cup being duplicated, Roberts said it was absurd to think that the rebel organisation would be able to host a successful event of this calibre - even if they succeeded in luring the world's top players. 'It is pretty fanciful. I would like to see how Packer will do it,' said Roberts, laughing off the notion. 'The Hong Kong Sevens is unique. It is more than rugby, it is a festival and I doubt anyone can recreate an atmosphere like what we have here overnight. 'I can't see how he can get the administration, the grounds and other infrastructure into place to hold a tournament similar to the World Cup,' added Roberts. On Wednesday, the South China Morning Post quoted Sir Ewart Bell, chairman of Rugby World Cup Ltd (the guardians of both the 15s and sevens World Cups), as saying that the established tournaments had nothing to worry about from Packer. Sir Ewart said: 'We are confident that our tournaments in future years will grow further in importance. Whatever structure others have, we are extremely confident that our tournaments give countries and players the opportunity to be the best in the world.' A confidential WRC report leaked to a Sydney daily newspaper yesterday, revealed that the proposed Packer-backed competition will launch three new major competitions in addition to possible 'duplication of the existing World Cup and annual Hong Kong Sevens tournaments'. Roberts said that the Hong Kong Sevens, which celebrated its 20th anniversary in March, was secure from all predators - as has been proven in the past. In the late '80s, the New South Wales Rugby Union decided to hold the World Sevens in Sydney as a rival to the Hong Kong Sevens. That grandiose scheme struggled for two years before folding, forcing the New South Wales body into liquidation. According to the WRC document, the world will be split into the three conferences. After conference games, the top teams in each conference plus a wild card will move into the play-offs with the winners meeting in the World Conference Championship. Traditional tournaments like the Five Nations and the Bledisloe Cup, played by WRC teams, will continue, plus a 62-match International World Series Championship - the equivalent of Test matches. The northern and southern conferences will be akin to the current Northern and Southern Hemisphere teams while the central conference will include countries from the Asia-Pacific, including the US, Canada, Argentina, Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong.