Oak Bay High Barbarians Sean White and Connor Braid, who were both capped for the Canada 15s and sevens rugby squads, are on the roster for the Canada Sevens team competing at the XX Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland this month.
Rugby Sevens is a sport on the rise in Canada, as was witnessed throughout the 2013/14 IRB Sevens World Series.
Canada’s men’s team finished a best-ever sixth place overall, with two top-three results (second – Glasgow, third – Las Vegas).
The 12-member squad assembled for the Commonwealth Games features many familiar faces from this record-breaking season. Leading Canada onto the pitch will be Captain John Moonlight (27, Pickering, ON) who was named to the 2013/14 IRB Sevens World Series Dream Team.
International sevens star Phil Mack (Oak Bay High) would certainly have been on the team had he not suffered an injury in the Pacific Nations Cup.
“This Canadian Sevens team has been playing at a world class level,” says Team Canada Chef de Mission, Chantal Petitclerc. “With their strong results on the IRB World Series this past season, those taking in the action at Ibrox Stadium are sure to be treated to exceptional games.”
The Canadian Sevens team has been placed in Pool A with four-time defending champions New Zealand, Barbados, and host-nation Scotland. The sevens tournament will run over two days with preliminary rounds the first day and tournament finals on the second.
“We’re excited about the team that has been selected for the Commonwealth Games and are eager to return to Glasgow,” said Steve Lancaster, Rugby Canada’s high performance manager. “Our previous trip to Scotland this year was very positive, and our guys proved that they can succeed against the best in the world. We see the Commonwealth Games as a big opportunity for this team, and will be looking for another strong result in Glasgow leading us into next year’s Pan American Games in Toronto and the Rio Olympics in 2016.”
The Canadian side made history in Glasgow earlier this year by reaching the final for the first time. They edged Scotland in the semifinal before being topped 54-7 by New Zealand in the final. The Commonwealth Games Rugby Sevens matches are scheduled for July 26 and 27.