Strong BC presence as National Men’s U20 squad is announced

Elias Ergas looks to evade a tackle. Image Courtesy of Rugby Canada Ian Muir

The announcement from Rugby Canada regarding the latest U20 squad contained lots of good news for BC rugby players.  In total, 14 of the 28 spots have been filled by BC athletes with talent coming from across the lower mainland and island.  Lead by Head Coach Jeff Williams (Victoria, BC), the squad will face off against the USA in a two game qualifying series for the Junior World Rugby Trophy.

Canada is due to face their neighbor to the south in two back to back matches on June 13th and June 17th in Edmonton.  The games will decide who will qualify for the Junior World Rugby Trophy, due to be held in Uruguay later this year.  There is much to play for, with Canada looking to avenge the last minute defeat they suffered in this fixture last year.  The squad also has some expectation, having reached the final of the competition in 2015, only to lose out to Georgia.  The winner of the Junior World Rugby Trophy qualifies for the 2018 World Rugby U20 Championship.

Many of the players already have international age-grade experience, with Liam Doll, Elias Ergas, Aaron Hersant, Fraser Hurst, Liam Murray, Quinn Ngawati, Anton Ngongo, William McDougall-Percillier, Brennig Prevost and Jake Thiel all previously having represented the national side.

Head Coach, Jeff Williams (from Victoria) said “Overall, there is a lot of experience on this year’s team.”  Expanding further, he noted that “We have had great buy in and the boys have good rugby IQ so they have been extremely respective to new ideas and concepts. However, rugby is simple, we need to outwork the opposition and play with passion and intensity and keep the game simple.”

Canada’s Men’s U20 Schedule:

Canada vs. USA — June 13 — Ellerslie Rugby Park, 9pm ET, 6pm PT

Canada vs. USA — June 17 — Ellerslie Rugby Park, 2pm ET/11am PT

Canada’s Men’s U20 Junior World Rugby Trophy Qualifier Roster (Name, club, hometown):

George Barton (Clermont) Duncan, BC

Matt Beukeboom (Section Paloise) Lindsay, ON

Lachlan Currie (Bond University) Gold Coast, Australia

Thomas Davidson (Toronto Scottish RFC), Chelsea, QC

Cole Davis (Canberra Royals) Calgary, AB

Liam Doll (UBC Thunderbirds) North Vancouver, BC

Elias Ergas (UBC Thunderbirds) Vancouver, BC

Nicholas Frost (UBC Thunderbirds) Vancouver, BC

Aaron Hersant (UVic Vikes) Victoria, BC

Fraser Hurst (UBC Thunderbirds) Vancouver, BC

Cole Keith (James Bay AA) Sussex, NB

Will Kelly (Brantford Harlequins) Ancaster, ON

Dewald Kotze (UBCOB Ravens) Edmonton, AB

Aidan McCleary (Westshore RFC) Burlington, ON

Aidan McMullan (Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue RFC), Montreal, QC

Jamie McNaughton Carleton Place, ON

Jack McRogers (Aurora Barbarians) Newmarket, ON

Liam Murray (Langley) Langley, BC

Steven Ng (Capilano RFC) Ottawa, ON

Quinn Ngawati (Westshore RFC) Victoria, BC

Anton Ngongo (Castaway Wanderers) Victoria, BC

James O’Neill (UVic Vikes) Cochrane, AB

Carson O’Sullivan (UVic Vikes) Buena Vista, SK

William McDougall-Percillier (Cowichan Piggies) Mill Bay, Victoria BC

Brennig Prevost (UVic Vikes) Victoria, BC

Connor Sampson (UBC Thunderbirds) Vancouver, BC

Jake Thiel (Abbotsford RFC) Abbotsford, BC

Josh Thiel (Bishop Burton College) Abbotsford, BC