Ottawa (ISN) – Parliament Hill is set to see some of its most important figures trade in their ties and briefcases for kits and boots as they go from their desks to the pitch next Monday.
To kick off the June test series and promote an exciting summer of rugby, Members of Parliament (MPs), media personalities and some of Canada’s national senior men will light up the lawn of Parliament for the 2012 “Game on the Hill”.
The game, which is set to kick off at 11:30 am, will be played in a touch sevens format and the teams will be coached by two former team Canada legends, Al Charron and Stu Ault, who are the most capped 7’s internationals from Ottawa.
National Men’s Program Manager Gareth Rees will referee the match that will be the first time Canada’s Senior Men will be together since the World Cup in New Zealand last October.
Some of the nine MPs participating in the match have valuable rugby experience. Hon. Andrew Scheer, MP for Regina Qu’Appelle and Speaker of the House, played rugby in high school, while BC MP Bob Zimmer previously coached Trinity Western University’s varsity rugby team. Of all the Parliamentarians however, Quebec MP Massimo Pacetti brings the most experience to the pitch, as he played for the Montreal Irish and Quebec.
Some notable athletes will also represent the MPs on June 4th. Canada’s Minister of Sport, Hon. Bal Gosal, was with Canada’s senior sevens team when they won gold in last year’s Pan Am games. Quebec MP and knockout artist Justin Trudeau is expected to take to the pitch in great shape after recently defeating political rival, Senator Patrick Brazeau, in a charity boxing match last March.
Other MPs include Ontario’s Paul Dewar and Glenn Thibeault, as well as Nova Scotia’s Peter Stoffer and Quebec MP Matthew Dubé.
The Politicians have been sharpening their skills leading up to the match with Canada’s Senior Men’s team, who are currently training in Ottawa.
The group of media who will be stepping out of the newsroom and press gallery include some big names. CBC’s Evan Solomon, CPAC’s Peter VanDusen, and CTV’s Kevin Newman and Terry Marcotte will set broadcasting aside for the game. They are joined by Sean Gordon and Shawn McCarthy from the Globe and Mail, the Ottawa Citizen’s Wayne Scanlan, the National Post’s John Ivison and Joël-Denis Bellevance of LaPresse.
The Game on The Hill is a fantastic showcase to promote 7s rugby and the summer rugby season in Canada. This summer the Ottawa area is set to host a number of important events. The Game on the Hill takes place just five days before Canada’s match against team USA in nearby Kingston. The NACRA Sevens tournament and Qualifier for the 2013 Sevens World Cup will take place in Ottawa on August 25 and 26. The game on the Hill is the perfect opportunity to open the summer season.