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Rugby Canada – Squamish native and four-time Rugby World Cup veteran Jamie Cudmore to Captain 18th ranked Canada against 10th seeded Japan in first-ever Men’s Fifteens International at world-class BC Place Stadium
VANCOUVER, BC – Canada’s Senior Men’s Team Head Coach Mark Anscombe has named his starting XV for Saturday’s historic test match against Japan at BC Place.

Captained by Jamie Cudmore, the team features eight returnees from Canada’s 2015 Rugby World Cup (RWC) squad. The other seven starters competed for Canada at the 2016 Americas Rugby Championship (ARC) earlier this year.

“You can expect to see guys who are committed and proud to put on the jersey,” Anscombe said. “They’ll empty their tanks on Saturday and give it everything they’ve got.”

Djustice Sears-Duru, Ray Barkwill and Jake Ilnicki will lineup in the front row with Cudmore pairing with Evan Olmstead at lock. Summerside, PEI, native Kyle Baillie will start at blindside flanker with Scarborough, Ont.’s Lucas Rumball getting the nod at openside. 71 test cap veteran Aaron Carpenter starts at No.8.

Gordon McRorie will start at scrum-half with St. John’s Pat Parfrey starting at fly-half after a great ARC campaign. 

A returning Taylor Paris will join Canada’s ARC try-scoring leader Dan Moor on the wing with Nick Blevins and Brock Staller forming the centre partnership. Matt Evans starts at fullback.

“I’m very proud to be here and to represent Canada,” Cudmore said. “It’s great to play in a venue like this at BC Place and we’re looking forward to Saturday.”

There’s also the potential for Matt Tierney and Matt Heaton to win their first test caps for Canada as they have been named to the bench.

“It’s a great opportunity for a lot of them and it’s their first chance to establish their claim to the future and they’re all excited about that and are ready to seize the chance,” Anscombe said.

The game against 10th ranked Japan will add another chapter to Canadian rugby history by being the first ever test match held at BC Place. Earlier this year, the world-class stadium held the inaugural HSBC Canada Men’s Sevens, where more than 60,000 fans packed in over two days to set a new Canadian rugby attendance record.

Canada is 8-14-2 all-time against Japan with the two draws taking place at the 2007 and 2011 Rugby World Cups. The two sides met last year as part of the Pacific Nations Cup with Japan winning 20-6. Canada has not beaten Japan since 2005 when they won 15-10 in Tokyo as part of the Super Cup.

The home side comes into the game after a successful 3-2 ARC campaign that included test wins over Uruguay, Brazil and Chile. Furthermore, it showcased a new wave of Canadian talent that saw nearly 20 players earn their first test caps for Canada with 10 of them being named to Anscombe’s 28-man RISEAsOne Summer Series squad.

Japan, who will host the 2019 Rugby World Cup, enters the tournament having claimed the 2016 Asia Rugby Championship after winning all four contests. However, they sent shockwaves through the sports world last year when they defeated powerhouse South Africa 34-32 in the 2015 Rugby World Cup pool stages. Despite collecting three wins, Japan missed out on qualifying for the tournament quarterfinals.

As part of their RISEAsOne Summer Series, Canada will also face Russia in Calgary and Italy in Toronto later this month. Tickets for those two games, as well as Saturday’s clash against Japan, are still available by clicking here. All three games will also be streamed LIVE on Rugby Canada’s official provider, TSN.

Canada’s Roster vs. Japan (Name, club, hometown):

1. Djustice Sears -Duru – (Glasgow Warriors/Ontario Blues) Oakville, ON

2. Ray Barkwill – (Sacramento/Ontario Blues) Niagara Falls, ON

3. Jake Ilnicki – (San Diego/BC Bears) Williams Lake, BC

4. Jamie Cudmore, captain – (Oyonnax) Squamish, BC

5. Evan Olmstead – (Newcastle Falcons/Prairie Wolf Pack) Vancouver, BC

6. Kyle Baillie – (Ohio/Atlantic Rock) Summerside, PEI

7. Lucas Rumball – (Balmy Beach RFC/Ontario Blues) Scarborough, ON

8. Aaron Carpenter – (Cornish Pirates/Ontario Blues) Brantford, ON

9. Gordon McRorie – (Calgary Hornets/Prairie Wolf Pack) Calgary, AB

10. Pat Parfrey – (Swilers RFC/Atlantic Rock) St. John’s, NL

11. Taylor Paris – (Agen) Barrie, ON

12. Nick Blevins – (San Francisco/Prairie Wolf Pack) Calgary, AB

13. Brock Staller – (UBC Thunderbirds/BC Bears) Vancouver, BC

14. Dan Moor – (Balmy Beach RFC/Ontario Blues) Toronto, ON

15. Matt Evans – (Cornish Pirates) Maple Bay, BC

16. Eric Howard – (Brantford Harlequins/Ontario Blues) Ottawa, ON

17. Tom Dolezel – (London St. George’s/Ontario Blues) London, ON 

18. Matt Tierney – (Section Paloise/Ontario Blues) Oakville, ON

19. Paul Ciulini – (Aurora Barbarians/Ontario Blues) Vaughan, ON

20. Matt Heaton – (Darlington Mowden Park/Atlantic Rock) Godmanchester, QC

21. Alistair Clark – (Bay Street Pigs/Ontario Blues) Oakville, ON

22. Jamie Mackenzie – (UBCOB Ravens/Ontario Blues) Oakville, ON

23. Mozac Samson – (Calgary Saints/Prairie Wolf Pack) Calgary, AB

Unavailable for selection:

Tyler Ardron – (Ospreys) Lakefield, ON

Brett Beukeboom – (Cornish Pirates) Lindsay, ON

Gradyn Bowd – (UVIC Vikes/Prairie Wolf Pack) Calgary, AB

Kyle Gilmour – (St. Albert RFC/Prairie Wolf Pack) St. Albert, AB

Jeff Hassler – (Ospreys) Okotoks, AB

Phil Mackenzie – (San Diego/Ontario Blues), Oakville, ON

Jason Marshall – (Agen/BC Bears) North Vancouver, BC

Callum Morrison – (UBCOB Ravens/BC Bears) Victoria, BC

Benoit Piffero – (Avenir Castaneén Rugby XV/Atlantic Rock) Montreal, QC

Jebb Sinclair – (London Irish/Atlantic Rock) Fredericton, NB

Andrew Tiedemann – (Bourgoin/Prairie Wolf Pack) St. Albert, AB

DTH van der Merwe – (Scarlets) Victoria, BC

Doug Wooldridge – (Lindsay RFC/Ontario Blues) Lindsay, ON 

Unavailable due to Rugby Sevens Olympic Repechage:

Nanyak Dala – (Castaway Wanderers/Prairie Wolf Pack) Saskatoon, SK

Ciaran Hearn – (London Irish/Atlantic Rock) Conception Bay South, NL

Nathan Hirayama – (UVIC Vikes/BC Bears) Vancouver, BC

Harry Jones – (Capilano RFC/BC Bears) North Vancouver, BC

Phil Mack – (James Bay AA/BC Bears) Victoria, BC

John Moonlight – (James Bay AA/Ontario Blues) Pickering, ON

Conor Trainor – (UBCOB Ravens/BC Bears) Vancouver, BC

Liam Underwood – (Balmy Beach RFC/Ontario Blues) Toronto, ON

Canada’s Senior Men’s Coaching Staff:

Head Coach – Mark Anscombe

Assistant Coach – Graeme Moffat

Assistant Coach, Forwards – Michael Shelley

Technical Consultant (Auckland Blues) – Paul Feeney

Head Strength & Conditioning – Michael Deasy

Analyst – Aaron Takel

Physiotherapist – Mallory White

Athletic Therapist – Jessica Smith

Tour Manager – Jim Kazakoff

Operations & Logistics Manager – Alana Gattinger

Canada’s RISEAsOne Summer Series Schedule:

June 11

Canada vs. Japan, BC Place, 6pm ET/3pm PT

June 18

Canada vs. Russia, Calgary Rugby Park, 5pm ET/2pm PT

June 26

Canada vs. Italy, BMO Field, 12pm ET/9am PT


About Rugby Canada

Rugby Canada is the national governing  body  of  the  sport  of  rugby  union  in Canada.  Rugby Football 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.

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 with, Rugby Canada has put an emphasis on developing its junior programs.  Our goal is to develop and train competitive teams for the 2016 and 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and Tokyo, Japan respectively, the 2017 Women’s Rugby World Cup in Ireland and 2019 Men’s Rugby World Cup in Japan. 







For more information, please contact:

Bryan Kelly, Rugby Canada

Manager, Communications and Media Relations

Phone: 250-216-5272