May 12, 2019 Langford, BC (ISN) – The Canadian Sevens women’s side did nearly everything they needed to do to secure a berth in the 2020 Olympics except finish higher than France in the HSBC Langford Sevens tournament. With a final day, fifth place finish for Canada that bid will be put on hold until the final tournament leg takes place in Biarritz, France in mid-June this year when Canada will get another opportunity to claim a spot.
Langford Sevens – Canada – Final Day
Canada, without a championship win at home over the past five years, would finish the tournament in fifth place after a day two, quarter-final, 12-7 loss to the USA would send them to the semi-final 5th place playoff.
In what was a physical, defensive game, USA’s Alev Kelter would score her first of two trys with time expired in the first half to take a 7-0 lead. Canada’s Charity Williams would respond with speed five minutes into the second half with a sideline run for one of her six trys scored over the two-day tournament to tie the game. A pair of missed tackles would send Kelter to the try zone two minutes later relegating Canada to the 5th place semi-final match against Spain.
With that loss, paired with France’s win over England, Canada would be temporarily be denied an automatic berth to the 2020 Olympics due to their point standings. Canada will now have to perform at their best in the last leg of the 2019 HSCBC World 7s Rugby season when they play in Biarritz, France.
In their semi-final, 5th place match, Canada’s team captain Ghislaine Landry would lead her team in a determined 31-0 win over Spain to advance to the 5th place final.
After Canada’s Bianca Farella would open the scoring in the first minute to set the tone, Landry would add two more trys and two converts to jump out to a comfortable 19-0 half-time lead over the Spanish. Charity Williams and Keyara Wardley would add second half trys for the 31-0 victory.
The Canadian Sevens women’s team would close out their home tournament against what has been in recent years an evenly matched team in England, however it would not be England’s day as Canada would stymie the Brits with a quick defense and an even quicker offense, routing England 31-7 to claim 5th place in the tournament.
Bianca Farella would score early for Canada two minutes into the match, diving over the try line with two tacklers in tow. With that try, Farrella drew even with Emilee Cherry with 128 tries on the World Series. Julia Greensheilds, Farella, and a pair from Charity Williams would all but ensure the win. For Farella, her second try of the game would put her second on the Canadian all-time try scorers list.
England ‘s Ellie Kildunne would offload to Emma Uren, setting her free to the Canadian end but the speedster Williams, known for her running, but now working to improve her defensive game, would track Uren down to hold the ball off the ground to prevent the try. England would finally score in the corner on a stab across the line by Heather Fisher, but with too little too late, Canada would take the final victory.
When asked about his team’s tournament performance, head Coach John Tait would comment, “when you get to day two it can be anyone’s game. I’m not disappointed with the way we played. I’m disappointed with the result obviously, because I know we can get better than that, but it’s the game of Sevens and sometimes the ball’s not going to bounce your way.”