Some say it is because of England's recent successes. Others point to the fact it is the biggest party in town. But organisers are unable to put a finger on why the demand for tickets to next weekend's sold-out Cathay Pacific/Credit Suisse Hong Kong Sevens is at an all-time high. 'We have been overwhelmed with the demand for tickets this year,' says Hong Kong Rugby Football Union executive director Allan Payne. 'We are not sure why there is such a huge demand as this tournament is not a milestone or a World Cup event.' Six thousand tickets went on sale to the public last December. These tickets were snapped up in a couple of hours, leaving hundreds of fans clutching nothing but frustration. Last year was the 30th anniversary of the Hong Kong Sevens and the year before that Hong Kong hosted the fourth Rugby World Cup Sevens. Both were played in front of full houses. This year is nothing out of the ordinary, but the public's demand for tickets has taken on an insatiable appetite. 'I think the reason why more people want to go and watch the Sevens these days is because of England's winning streak,' says England fan Ivan Chow. 'I normally follow English football, but in the past few years I have also started going to the Sevens to support the England rugby team. There are a lot of local fans like me who support England.' Payne, an Englishman himself, says the Hong Kong public's love affair with all things English, and the success of Simon Amor and the English sevens team - they have won the last four Hong Kong Sevens (Fiji won the World Cup in 2005) - could be just part of the reason for tickets being dearer than gold dust. 'England winning could be just a small part of it. I don't think it is the main reason why tickets continue to be scarce. We will be carrying out a review after the tournament to try to pinpoint the reason for the demand,' Payne said. Needless to say, the HKRFU is happy with the situation. A full house and increased interest translates into bumper profits - money which local rugby needs to sustain its development programmes, the clubs and national teams throughout the year. The clubs and all aspects of local rugby - from mini-rugby to women's rugby - are the backbone of the HKRFU and naturally the largest portion of the 40,000 tickets available goes to them. 'This year we allocated 18,000 tickets to the local rugby community, which included all the clubs, mini-rugby, the Rugby Union Club etc,' Payne said. 'The Hong Kong public got 6,000, which is more than last year. From the remaining 16,000, half goes to patrons and sponsors, 4,000 are sold overseas, while the balance is shared among the International Rugby Board, all the participating unions and for complimentary tickets.' While the rugby community was top priority for the HKRFU, it stressed the general public would always be taken into account when tickets were sold. 'Striking a balance is very important to us. While we advocate members of the public joining a rugby club, we will always look after the general public as much as we can. The local rugby community, the general public and our patrons and sponsors all play an important role,' added Payne. Magdoom Fiaz, whose two daughters, Aysha and Aneesa, play rugby for Hong Kong Football Club, praised the HKRFU for looking after the interests of the community. 'My daughters and I have been involved with rugby for the past seven years and it is good to see the people who support rugby all year round being taken care of,' said Fiaz, who also coaches the Football Club's girls' under-12 team. Payne said: 'This is the best option if you want a ticket - join a club and get involved with Hong Kong rugby.' With demand exceeding supply, the HKRFU says there will always be disgruntled and unhappy members of the public. 'This year we could have easily filled a 48,000 or 50,000-seat stadium,' added a wistful Payne.