Wednesday, November 5, 2014

International Rugby: Experimental Canada ready for Namibia

Photo Credit: Jose Lagman Rugby Canada
Canadian rugby head coach Kieran Crowley has named his lineup for Friday's international fixture against Namibia in Colwyn Bay, Wales. the experimental lineup features five changes from the team that faced the RFU Championship XV last weekend. It is, nonetheless below full strength with Crowley saving some players for the following fixture against Samoa. The match is to be a battle between the second best team from the Americas and the second best from Africa. Canada, though, is odds on favorite due to the comparative histories of the nations in addition to the differing quality of players. It is to be Canada's second match of the tour but first test. Namibia is coming off a home win over Germany. 


The New Zealand based pairing of Hubert Buydens and Jason Marshall have been selected as the starting props with Ray Barkwill joining them at hooker. This sees former captain and leading hooker Aaron Carpenter out of the starting lineup. Behind them Jess Sinclair and Tyler Hotson form a reliable second-row combination but Jamie Cudmore is not to be involved. 

Cudmore is very likely to start against Samoa as will regular captain Tyler Ardron who has also not been named to face Namibia. Without Ardron regular openside flanker John Moonlight will play at the back of the scrum which enables Nanyak Dala to wear the seven shirt while the promising Kyle Gilmour gets a chance at blindside flanker. 

Regular first choice scrumhalf Phil Mack is out of the tour injured and in his place Canada 'A' scrumhalf Gorgon McRorie will have an opportunity. He will be joined by Connor Braid in the halves. Braid has been playing for the Glasgow Warriors as a medical joker and has added pressure given the non-availability of Matt Evans, Harry Jones and Liam Underwood. 

The trio are all missing through injury which sees Patrick Parfrey being back-up to Braid on the bench. The shortage of 10s also means a shortage of 12s due to Crowley having had a tradition of playing fly halves at inside centre. To fill the gap he has opted to play regular outside centre, Ciaran Hearn at inside centre and have the returning Conor Trainor (pictured above to the right) play outside him. 

In the back-three there is no place for James Pritchard who has scored more points for Canada than any other player in history. In his place DTH van der Merwe will look to convert his form for Glasgow into a fine performance for Canada. Also starting in the back-three are Sean Duke and Jeff Hassler. Duke has been a fine performance for the Canadian Sevens side while Hassler has, this season, been the leading winger in Wales.  

1
Hubert Buydens
Manawatu
New Zealand
2
Ray Barkwill
Ontario Blues
Canada
3
Jason Marshall
Hawkes Bay
New Zealand
4
Tyler Hotson
Doncaster Knights
England
5
Jebb Sinclair
London Irish
England
6
Kyle Gilmour
Prairie Wolfpack
Canada
7
Nanyak Dala
Prairie Wolfpack
Canada
8
John Moonlight
Ontario Blues
Canada
9
Gordon McRorie
Prairie Wolfpack
Canada
10
Connor Braid
Glasgow Warriors
England
11
Sean Duke
BC Bears
Canada
12
Ciaran Hearn
Atlantic Rock
Canada
13
Conor Trainor
BC Bears
Canada
14
Jeff Hassler
Ospreys
Wales
15
DTH van der Merwe
Glasgow Warriors
Scotland
16
Doug Wooldridge
Ontario Blues
Canada
17
Ryan Hamilton
BC Bears
Canada
18
Jake Ilnicki
NSA Country Eagles
Australia
19
Brett Beukeboom
Plymouth Albion
England
20
Aaron Carpenter
Cornish Pirates
England
21
Sean White
BC Bears
Canada
22
Patrick Parfrey
Atlantic Rock
Canada
23
Jordon Wilson-Ross
Ontario Blues
Canada

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