Rugby Canada – News Update

rugby canada

Rugby Canada

August 18, 2013, (ISN) – Canada’s Men’s Team has moved one step closer to the 2015 Rugby World Cup in England with a 27-9 victory over USA in Saturday night’s Rugby World Cup Qualifying Series opener in Charleston, South Carolina.

In front of a nearly packed house at Charleston’s Blackbaud Stadium, Phil Mack, DTH van der Merwe and Harry Jones each scored tries for Canada and fullback James Pritchard added 12 points off the boot in the victory. All nine points for the Eagles were from Chris Wyles.

Canada will now take a 18-point advantage into next Saturday’s RWC Qualifying Series finale at downtown Toronto’s BMO Field. Happy with the win, Canada knows that tonight’s victory is only the beginning and more work is needed to clinch the series next weekend at home.

Kieran Crowley’s side got off to a quick start when scrumhalf Phil Mack took a nifty pass from van der Merwe and chipped the ball over the defender. With a great show of pace, Mack beat his man to dive over the line for the first score of the game. Pritchard would add the difficult conversion to make it 7-0.

Pritchard would further Canada’s lead to 10-0 near the 14 minute mark with a long-range penalty after a coming from the side penalty against the USA.

Following a missed penalty from Wyles, Mack looked to have scored his second try of the game after taking a pass from Matt Evans’ 40-metre linebreak. However, referee Leighton Hodges blew the play down, calling an obstruction against Evans. Score remained 10-0.

The boot of Pritchard would add another three points at the 38-minute mark, meaning Canada would take a 13-0 lead into halftime.

USA got on the board to open the second frame as Wyles found his mark and hit his first-of-three conversions on the day. But, that’s as close as the home side would come.

Harry Jones, making only his third start at flyhalf, controlled the backs around the field and was fearless in the tackle areas.

At the 50th minute, the former James Bay AA connection of van der Merwe and Mack would connect again. Van der Merwe took an errant USA clearance kick and broke two tackles near the left touch line before dishing to Mack who got brought down five metres from the line goal line. Jones would later capitalize on the forward motion and score Canada’s second try of the game by smashing through two would-be tacklers. Pritchard added the conversion to make it 20-3.

Canada’s final try of the game would come after a big run and second effort from Alberta’s Nick Blevins and van der Merwe punched it in for Canada just after the 60 minute mark. Another conversion from Pritchard puts Canada ahead 27-3.

USA poured on some late pressure in the final minutes, but Canada’s defence held strong, with big tackles being made by Jebb Sinclair, Ciaran Hearn, John Moonlight and Tyler Hotson to name a few.

Wyles would add two more penalties to bring the game to a final score of 27-9 for Canada.

What Head Coach Kieran Crowley said:

“There were a lot of mistakes tonight for both teams. Certainly we’ve got a lot of work to do before next Saturday but I’m really happy with the way we stuck through it and we need to be happy about our performance tonight.”

“Even though we scored three tries we’ve got to get our patterns going. We’ve got to have better ball security. Our defence was good, but we let them get too many easy yards and at the end of the game we were happy playing defense which isn’t what we want. But, our guys stick it out well to the end.”

“You’ve got to be able to keep them off the scoresheet and we did that quite well. At the end they breached us, but our scramble defence held strong.”

“We’re now going to enjoy the test match win and have a travel day tomorrow, review on Monday and work hard throughout the week to prepare for Saturday at BMO Field.”

What Canada Aaron Carpenter said:

“Coming down and playing in a tough environment in the States is always difficult and we’re happy to come away with a win. We were looking to come down here and get an advantage in the series, so this win is awesome for us; we’re happy with the result.”

“The game didn’t go exactly to plan for either side, but we came out on top with physicality and that’s what the game comes down to in the end.”

“For next Saturday we’re going to try and hold onto the ball more, we felt that they’re getting the bulk of the possession. We want to hold onto the ball and be able to run through our phases and patterns and hopefully we’ll be able to break them a little easier. We’re trying to put them under pressure around that 10-phase mark.”


Canada 27

Tries: Mack, Jones, Van Der Merwe

Conversion: Pritchard 3

PG: Pritchard 2

United States 9



PG: Wyles 3


Both Rugby World Cup Qualifying games against USA will be televised LIVE on TSN2, Rugby Canada’s Official Broadcast Partner.

We’re encouraging fans to support Canada’s Men’s and Women’s Teams by joining #REDNATION at and wearing RED at the August 24thMatch at BMO Field. Purchase your tickets here:

Follow @RugbyCanada on Twitter at and on Facebook at while the team is on tour for up-to-the-minute information on the team.

Canada’s Roster for Rugby World Cup Qualifier in Charleston, SC – (Club, CRC Team) Hometown

1- Andrew Tiedemann, (Castaway Wanderers/Prairie Wolf Pack) St. Albert, AB

2- Ryan Hamilton, (Capilano RFC/BC Bears) Vancouver, BC

3- Jason Marshall, (Atlantique Stade Rochelais/BC Bears) Vancouver, BC

4- Jebb Sinclair, (London Irish) Fredericton, NB

5- Jamie Cudmore, (ASM Clermont Auvergne) Squamish, BC

6- Tyler Ardron, (Ospreys/Ontario Blues) Lakefield, ON

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

8- Aaron Carpenter, Captain, (Cornish Pirates) Brantford, ON

9- Phil Mack, (Uvic Vikes/BC Bears) Victoria, BC

10- Harry Jones, (Capilano RFC/BC Bears) West Vancouver, BC

11- DTH Van Der Merwe, (Glasgow Warriors) Regina, SK

12- Nick Blevins, (Calgary Hornets/Prairie Wolf Pack) Calgary, AB

13- Ciaran Hearn, (Castaway Wanderers/Atlantic Rock) Conception Bay, NL

14- Matt Evans, (Cornish Pirates) Maple Bay, BC

15- James Pritchard, (Bedford Blues) Parkes, NSW, Australia

16- Ray Barkwill, (Niagara Wasps RFC/Ontario Blues) Niagara Falls, ON

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

18- Doug Wooldridge, (Lindsay RFC/Ontario Blues) Lindsay, ON

19- Tyler Hotson, (London Scottish) Vancouver, BC

20- Nanyak Dala, (Castaway Wanderers RFC/Prairie Wolf Pack) Saskatoon, SK

21- Sean White, (James Bay AA/BC Bears) Victoria, BC

22- Nathan Hirayama, (UVIC Vikes/BC Bears) Richmond, BC

23- Phil Mackenzie, (Sale Sharks) Oakville, ON


Sean Duke, (Uvic Vikes/BC Bears) Vancouver, BC

Jon Phelan, (Lille Métropole Rugby/Atlantic Rock) Montreal, QC

Liam Underwood, (Queens University/Ontario Blues) Toronto, ON

Senior Men’s Team Staff:

Kieran Crowley – Head Coach

Neil Barnes – Assistant Coach

Geraint John – Assistant Coach

Mike Shelley – Assistant Coach

Calum Ramsay – Performance Analyst

Isabel Grondin – Therapist

Michael Cook – Therapist

Andy Evans – Strength and Conditioning

Dr. John Gillis – Team Doctor

Gareth Rees – National Team Manager

Bryan Kelly – Media Coordinator

Rugby Canada’s 2013 Match Schedule:


Saturday May 25th, 2013

Canada 16 – 9 USA

Ellerslie Rugby Park, Edmonton, AB


Wednesday, June 5th, 2013

Canada 20 – 18 Fiji

Twin Elm Rugby Park, Ottawa, ON


Saturday, June 8th, 2013

Canada 36 – 27 Tonga

Richardson Stadium, Queen’s University, Kingston, ON


Saturday, June 15th, 2013

Canada 14 – 40 Ireland

BMO Field, Toronto, ON


Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

Japan 16 – 13 Canada

Mizuho Rugby Ground, Nagoya, Japan


World Cup Qualifier – Match #1

Saturday, August 17th, 2013

Canada 27 – 9 USA



World Cup Qualifier – Match #2

Saturday, August 24th, 2013

Kick off @ 4pm ET

BMO Field, Toronto, ON



Sunday, November 3rd, 2013

Kick off @ 1pm ET

BMO Field, Toronto, ON



Saturday, November 9th, 2013

Kick off TBD

Tbilisi, Georgia


Saturday, November 16th, 2013

Kick off TBD

Bucharest, Romania


Saturday, November 23rd, 2013

Kick off TBD

Lisbon, Portugal