Canada keeps rugby position despite losses


Canada concluded its Glasgow Sevens effort with a sense of losing the day but winning the weekend as they achieved the objective aim for at the tournament. Two defeats on Sunday (May 5) could not wipe out Canada’s impressive showing on Day One as the team keeps its seat at the IRB World Sevens Series top table going into the new campaign.

HSBC Sevens World Series - Glasgow 2013
Photo: Martin Seras Lima/Rugby Canada

Canada entered Sunday’s games after beating Samoa and Kenya, but losing to South Africa, on Saturday.

In Sunday’s first game, a 26-7 decision in favour of Wales, the Canadians fell to their fourth defeat to the Welshmen. Canada was hoping to celebrate retaining its core-team spot for 2013-14 with progression into the Cup semi-finals but an early try from James Davies put them on the back foot. Unlike twice on Saturday, Canada could not fight back for victory.

Wales went ahead 14-0 with two-and-a-half minutes left in the first-half when a dummy from Gareth Davies was bought by Chauncey O’Toole. And the margin could have grown further before the break but for John Moonlight’s tackle.

Canada needed a foothold in the game via a converted try and with replacements Nanyak Dala and Phil Mack starting, the change paid off when Mack fed the impressive Conor Trainor who spotted a gap before racing over untouched for a slick score that made it 14-7.

Unfortunately, this wasn’t to be the start of a comeback similar to Saturday’s against Samoa and Kenya as Wales moved up another gear and promptly hit back through tries from Lee Williams and Rhys Shellard that sent Canada into the Plate.

Canada’s second game was a 22-7 setback to Argentina. McMaster Marauders’ Tyler Ardron was added to the lineup of Dala, Trainor, Mack, Jeff Hassler, Nathan Hirayama, and Harry Jones.

Argentina, however, though were too hot and claimed their opener with two minutes on the clock, sparked by the creative Matias Moroni who sent Franco Sabato sprinting in down the left wing from 35 meters out. The conversion attempt was unsuccessful.

The South Americans was in the ascendancy and when Joaquin Diaz Bonilla scored after a nice grubber through from Moroni, Argentina were ten points to the good.

Canada did get on the board before half-time after Mack’s clever thinking – his quick taps led to the sizeable Ardron striding over with a tackler on his back.

Hirayama was on target with the conversion and had Canada made the most of their late foray in the Argentinean 22 points, they might have gone in ahead at the break.

As it was the Canadians could not find the key to unlock the Pumas defense and when sustained pressure on their own line led to Facundo Panceyra Garrido going over on the right, the margin had stretched to two scores at Scotstoun Stadium.

Unfortunately it was to be Argentina’s day as they finished with a try from Anibal Panceyra Garrido following Valentin Cruz’s snipe off a scrum. However, Canada will no doubt be a happy group as core team rugby remains on the menu for 2013/14.

Next up for Canada is the London Sevens on May 11-12.