Canada Rugby Training

Team Canada refine their game plan during training – Pics courtesy of Andy Laing/ISN

Article By Andy Laing

July 21, 2014 (ISN) Yesterday marked the start of my commonwealth games. The day before we were shooting a wedding video for a lovely couple. On the train home, we got word from our contact about covering exclusively the Canadian rugby 7’s team as they prepare for the start for their Commonwealth Campaign.

I arrived at the University of Strathclyde pitches, I was welcomed by a security guard who asked me ” Are you the guy with the Canadians” I could only respond with a little bit of pride, “erm yup that must be me”

I walked sleep deprived to the pitch, the Trinidad & Tobago boys were the closest to the front of the pitch starting their warm up. From the start these guys looked awesome with a football (Soccer to our Canadian readers) but not so assured with the egg shaped rugby ball.

The game was always billed as a “Friendly” which from the off was not the case. This was not due to any ill feeling or as a result of any bad tackles, however the Canadian boys just went out and did there thing.

Team Canada were dominant and they ran out confident winners.

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Newly appointed head coach Kieran Crowley – Pics courtesy of Andy Laing/ISN

After the match we caught up with the newly appointed (June 2014) Coach Kieran Crowley who won the world cup with New Zealand in 1987.

Adam asked asked how do you feel about the group its a heavy group with Scotland & New Zealand?

“New Zealand are the bench mark, they are undefeated in four years in the commonwealths, but we will be concentrating on what we can do”

On Scotland we asked will you use the success from earlier in the season against Scotland as motivation?

“There is no difference, they want to keep the momentum going and obviously it is a different tournament with different opponents. Our group is the only group with 3 core teams, so one of them is going home.”

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Sean White – Pics courtesy of Andy Laing/ISN

We then had then had the chance to speak to Sean White who kindly agreed to an interview straight after an ice bath, and not once did he look like he wanted to punch us. Those of you who have had an ice will understand completely!!

Adam asked Sean, how has the welcome been in Scotland?

“The welcome has been great, the games volunteers are full of energy and very friendly. We are five days in and some of us are still getting over the jet lag!”

Have you had Haggis and Irn Bru? – I would like to try Haggis, I have tried Irn Bru and I will never try it again!!.

How do you guys relax during the settling time before the tournament starts?

“We usually go go karting and we are going this afternoon, we are all very competitive and it keeps us nice and relaxed and great for team bonding.”

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Connor Trainor – Pics courtesy of Andy Laing/ISN

Finally we spoke to Connor Trainor – did you feel good seeing the Trinidad and Tobago team sitting down 30 mins before you finished tonight.

“As far as we were concerned we were treating this as a competitive match.”

After the rugby training I headed up to the main press centre at the SECC precinct, where we were treated to Scottish whiskey and luxury foods from all over Scotland.

Commonwealth Games Chief Executive David Grevemberg gave a passionate speech about the games and the importance of the work the media will have in delivering copy and images and of course the virtues of Glasgow and what to see and do whilst here. We also had the pleasure of meeting other members of international press and some of the artists selected to play such as

For me, Adam, David and Stephen our Commonwealth Games 2014 starts today. We will be trying to get as much out of all of the athletes, coaches and spectators as we can to document a feeling of the Games in Glasgow.

Sleep may not be something that we see until August the 4th.

All of our coverage will be here and on and via @AndyISN, @ISNstephen, @islandsports1 & @kingad.