CANADA OPENS 2017 WITH EXCITING 4TH PLACE FINISH AT WELLINGTON SEVENS
WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND — Canada’s Men’s Sevens Team finished fourth in Wellington after defeat to Scotland in the bronze medal match. Earlier in the day, Canada had beaten Argentina to advance to the semi-finals where they were beaten by South Africa.
It was Canada’s first cup semi-final berth since the 2015 Japan Sevens. Canada had gone 3-0 on Day 1 of the tournament.
CANADA 17-12 ARGENTINA
Canada booked its place in the cup semis after a three try win over Argentina. After a tense opening six minutes, Matias Osadczuk was shown a yellow card that Canada quickly took advantage of as Adam Zaruba scored.
However, Argentina replied before the break as Nicolas Menendez gave his side a 7-5 lead heading into the interval. After Mike Fuailefau gave Canada a 10-7 lead, Osadczuk restored the Argentinian lead to 12-10.
But Justin Douglas had the final say as he sprinted past the Argentine defence to give Canada 17-12 lead they would not relinquish.
CANADA 5-21 SOUTH AFRICA
The Blitzboks ran in three tries as Canada fell to the series leaders in their cup semi. After a good start, with some solid ball possession, Canada fell behind as Seabel Senatla touched down to open the scoring before Kwagga Smith doubled the South African lead to 14-0 at the break.
A Werner Kok try pushed South Africa’s lead to 21-0 but Canada continued to soldier on and were finally awarded when Adam Zaruba scored in the corner to cut the Blitzbok lead to 21-5. Despite a final push over the last 90 seconds, Canada were denied and will now face Scotland for third place, a team they defeated in their tournament opener on Day 1.
CANADA 22-28 SCOTLAND
Despite an Adam Zaruba hat-trick, it was Scotland who came out on top on this Day 1 rematch. An exciting first half saw the sides alternate tries as Zaruba (2) touched down for Canada while James Fleming and George Horne had Scotland’s tries, who took a 14-12 edge into the break.
Fleming added his name to the scoresheet to open the second half but Canada came flying back as Zaruba completed his hat-trick to cut the Scottish lead to 21-17. Canada would regain the lead with a little over a minute left as Isaac Kaay scored his first HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series try but Fleming would steal victory with a try 20 seconds from the end giving Scotland the bronze medal.
Canada’s Men’s Sevens Squad for Wellington and Sydney (Name, club, hometown):
Justin Douglas – (Abbotsford RFC/BC Bears) Abbotsford, BC
Mike Fuailefau – (Castaway Wanderers/BC Bears) Victoria, BC
Lucas Hammond – (UVIC Vikes) Toronto, ON
Nathan Hirayama – captain, Sydney (UVic Vikes/BC Bears) Richmond, BC
Harry Jones – Captain, Wellington (Capilano RFC) Vancouver, BC
Caleb Jordan – (Montreal Wanderers) Montreal, QC
Isaac Kaay – (UVic Vikes) Kamloops, BC
Pat Kay – (Castaway Wanderers/BC Bears) Duncan, BC
Karsten Leitner – (UBC Thunderbirds) Vancouver, BC
Luke McCloskey – (Castaway Wanderers) Victoria, BC
John Moonlight – (James Bay AA/Ontario Blues) Pickering, ON
Matt Mullins – (Queen’s University/Ontario Blues) Belleville, ON
Adam Zaruba – (Capilano RFC/BC Bears) Vancouver, BC
Unavailable for Selection:
Phil Berna – (UBC Thunderbirds) Vancouver, BC
Liam Underwood – (Balmy Beach RFC/Ontario Blues) Toronto, ON
Head Coach – Damian McGrath
Assistant Coach – Lee Douglas
Physiotherapist – Danielle Mah
Analyst – Calum Ramsay
Manager – Brian Hunter
Canada’s Wellington Sevens Day 1 Schedule:
Canada 28-19 Scotland
Canada 28-5 Wales
Canada 29-0 Russia
Canada’s Wellington Sevens Day 2 Schedule:
Canada 17-12 Argentina
Canada 5-21 South Africa
Canada 22-28 Scotland
About Rugby Canada
Rugby Canada is the national governing body of the sport of rugby union in Canada. Rugby Union has a long history in Canada dating back to its initial appearance in the 1860s. Since 1974, Rugby Canada has been a permanent fixture on the global rugby scene, including trips to each of the eight Men’s Rugby World Cups and seven Women’s Rugby World Cups. As a regular on the Men’s and Women’s HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, Canada continues to climb the world rankings and challenge the dominant rugby nations in both versions of the game. Canada’s Women’s Rugby Sevens Team also made history in 2016, capturing the first-ever Bronze Medal at the Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Rugby Canada has also put a renewed emphasis on developing its junior programs to support the growth of rugby at the grass-roots level and to ensure there are elite programs for prospering young rugby players to become involved. Our goal is to develop and train competitive teams for the 2017 Women’s Rugby World Cup in Ireland, the 2018 Sevens World Cup in San Francisco, the 2019 Men’s Rugby World Cup in Japan and 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo.