Commonwealth Games 2018 - Men

April 14 2018

CWG Summary - Three Matches and Out for Men's Team, Next Up Singapore


by BCRN 7s Correspondent

Pool: Canada, Kenya, New Zealand, Zambia

Despite the month long tour into Asia and Australia any gathering of athletes at a Commonwealth Games is a special time for athletes.

The Gold Coast in Australia is pretty awesome at any time of year but the hosts have been working on the preparations for several years now and the venue did not disappoint in this scenic part of the Australian coastline.

After Hong Kong – Canada needed rejuvenating or so it appeared on TV and the pleasant distractions of a Commonwealth Games in such a magnificent setting hopefully would do the trick and offer some relaxation away from the training field.

Just over half this present team were in Glasgow four years ago – Douglas, Moonlight, Fuailefau, Braid, Jones, Hirayama and Hammond all took the field in Scotland. Compared to other teams that is an above average squad of returnees.

The pool in Australia is a particularly tough one with New Zealand and an in-form Kenya team heading the degree of difficulty at about 9.5 out of 10.0 going into the weekend tournament.

After some disappointing results in Hong Kong and yet another long 8 hour and 40 minute flight (approx) from China into Australia it will be interesting to see how the players have managed themselves and their recovery. An eight hour flight is just long enough to stiffen up the joints after a tournament and it certainly is not ideal for recovery purposes.

In fact – Day 1 against the Kenyans did not go well at all. Mistakes cost us this game and invited the Africans into the contest and eventually the result was theirs – worse - it might mean that the Commonwealth tournament is over as Canada must win the next two games in their pool. The coach won’t be at a loss for words after this result that is certain – and nor should he be as some of our guys need to wake up! We are too good and too experienced to play like we did in this game – essentially it’s unacceptable.
Canada 10 v Kenya 26

Zambia offered little if any resistance - and after the unnecessary loss to Kenya, Canada took out their frustrations on the Africans and ran up the score. Mike Fuailefau scored some tries but he needs to do that against New Zealand too if Canada wants to advance!
Canada 47 v Zambia 0

No meaningful possession or visible attempts to keep the ball away from the talented Kiwi team who seem intent on getting to the final where the gold medal is waiting. It’s like a re-occurring dream which ends badly despite efforts to change the plot – Canada needs to shake things up if some of the starters don’t perform the way they should be performing. Maybe we need to get back to the current issue which has invaded the rugby landscape in Canada with our fifteens program – players need to play – and play consistently. For instance – tackling – it’s like a tennis shot or a golf shot which has to be rehearsed constantly in competition if a player is to maintain their edge. Presently we do not do very well in this competitive aspect of the game and it shows. The new coach in the XVs program has accused our team of not getting up off the ground fast enough and back into general play which maybe the case but essential tackling seems a more vital skill to acquire – one is a skill and the other is an attitude we suggest - but both require match fitness in the heat of battle! The days of Gregor Dixon (in sevens) and Danny Baugh (in XVs) seem to have disappeared from the Canadian skill package in regard to tackling and that is a shame. And be very certain of one thing - both these guys played rugby every weekend that was available to them. What to do next in order to get some more consistent results is a difficult proposition which requires more risk from a coaching perspective – sitting starters for less experienced players is not an easy decision for a coach but it’s clear some of the bench players need some field time immediately. Also - it seems likely that after the RWC in California this summer several senior players may retire and the void of experience will increase unless some of the present squad get onto the field. It’s not an enviable position to be in as the team heads north again into Singapore where things went so very well last season.
Canada 7 v New Zealand 33

Singapore is next – good luck Canada!

Andrew Coe – Markham Irish (Toronto, ON)
Connor Braid – James Bay AA (Victoria, BC)
Tevaughn Campbell – Unattached (Toronto, ON)
Admir Cejvanovic – Burnaby Lake RFC (Burnaby, BC)
Justin Douglas – Abbotsford RFC (Abbotsford, BC)
Lucas Hammond – Toronto Nomads (Toronto, ON)
Nathan Hirayama – Unattached (Richmond, BC)
Isaac Kaay – UVIC Vikes (Kamloops, BC)
Pat Kay – Castaway Wanderers (Duncan, BC)
Mike Fuailefau – Castaway Wanderers (Victoria, BC)
Harry Jones – Capilano RFC (North Vancouver, BC)
Luke McCloskey – Castaway Wanderers (Victoria, BC)
John Moonlight –  Captain, James Bay AA (Pickering, ON)
Matt Mullins – Queen’s University (Belleville, ON)



Canada 1-2 and Out in Commonwealth Games: South Africa v Fiji and NZ v England in Semis


Canada defeated Zambia 47-0 for their only win and they fell to Kenya 26-10 and NZ 33-7. That record means they're done in the tournament and will concentrate on Singapore next with two weeks to recover.

NZ go through to the medal round from their pool while Kenya go through to the 5-8 ranking. Canada started well against Kenya and it was a match they could have won in the 1st half but errors plagued the team and they left at least two tries on the table. It was all Kenya in the second half.

South Africa v Fiji and NZ v England are the semi-final matchups.


Canada Lose to Kenya 26-10 Despite Dominating First Half - Need to Defeat NZ to Continue to Day 2: VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS


Canada have no one to blame but themselves for this loss, the announcer even suggested they should be up 3 tries at the half. Canada had all the possession and territory, they scored first and should have had two more tries in the first 7 minutes. It was simple mental errors that were their downfall.

A scrum 5 metres out went begging when the feed was delayed and the ref awarded a penalty to Kenya. A pass for a try that slipped out of the player's hands. It was frustrating to watch for Canadian rugby fans, I imagine even more so for the coach.
The Commonwealth Games format is not very forgiving in the men's bracket, if you finish 3rd or 4th in your pool there is no Day 2 for you, you're gone. Canada have to defeat NZ to just qualify for the 5th to 8th place games on Day 2.

Andrew Coe – Markham Irish (Toronto, ON)
Connor Braid – James Bay AA (Victoria, BC)
Tevaughn Campbell – Unattached (Toronto, ON)
Admir Cejvanovic – Burnaby Lake RFC (Burnaby, BC)
Justin Douglas – Abbotsford RFC (Abbotsford, BC)
Lucas Hammond – Toronto Nomads (Toronto, ON)
Nathan Hirayama – Unattached (Richmond, BC)
Isaac Kaay – UVIC Vikes (Kamloops, BC)
Pat Kay – Castaway Wanderers (Duncan, BC)
Mike Fuailefau – Castaway Wanderers (Victoria, BC)
Harry Jones – Capilano RFC (North Vancouver, BC)
Luke McCloskey – Castaway Wanderers (Victoria, BC)
John Moonlight – Captain, James Bay AA (Pickering, ON)
Matt Mullins – Queen’s University (Belleville, ON)

Men's Schedule:
Canada vs. Kenya at 8:15pm ET/5:15pm PT (April 13)
Canada vs. Zambia at 11:55pm ET/8:55pm PT (April 13)
Canada vs. New Zealand at 6:49am ET/3:49am PT (April 14)

Women's Schedule & Results:
Canada 29-0 South Africa
Canada 24-12 Kenya
Canada vs. New Zealand at 10:49pm ET/7:49pm PT (April 13)

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