Rugby Ready for Olympic spotlight

Rugby Ready for Olympic spotlight

After a 92 year hiatus, the sport of rugby will return to the Olympic program for 2016 in the form of rugby sevens. Currently, Canada is home to the fifth-ranked women’s team in the world and the 11th ranked men’s team –   the defending Pan American champions.

There is an estimated 100,000 registered rugby players in the country. Surely many of those were thrilled in 2009 when the International Olympic Committee voted 81-8 for its inclusion into the Summer Games for the first time since the 15-side version appeared in 1924.

In a speech at the Rugby Canada Annual General Meeting, Canadian Olympic Committee CEO and Secretary General Christopher Overholt declared the next several years will be Rugby Canada’s “time on the world stage” and suggested that the sport’s popularity at home will continue to grow now that rugby is back on the Olympic program, after nearly a century away from the Olympic Games.

“Adding (rugby) to the Olympic program provides a level of exposure that’s virtually unparalleled in the sport universe,” said Overholt in Victoria, BC.

Canada Hosting

Canadians will be able to get a taste of some rugby seven’s action and its stars after it was  announced that this year’s America’s Rugby Championship will be held in Canada between October 11-19. All games will be held at Westhill Stadium – the official home of the Canadian Rugby Centre of Excellence in Langford, BC.

The tournament will include Canada, Argentina (ranked 8th), United States (12th) and a South American team to be determined once the final rankings come out for the region after the South American Championships later this month in Uruguay.

Canada reached the final of last year’s tournament before ultimately losing to Argentina.

“Hosting international Rugby at the Canadian Rugby Centre of Excellence is always an exciting opportunity,” said Graham Brown, CEO of Rugby Canada. “Local community support for the America’s Rugby Championship is incredible. This year, we hope to make the tournament an even better experience for fans in attendance and those watching our live stream online.”

The three day event will include six total matches being played. The team and the coaching staff are excited for the opportunity to play on home soil in front of strong crowds.

“We know this tournament is going to be a great success for Canadian rugby and for the local community,” said Kieran Crowley, Head Coach of Canada’s National Senior Men’s Team. “ Canada faces stiff competition, but we’re certain to compete hard and are looking to secure a championship on home soil.”

The tournament itself is backed by the International Rugby Board. The Board views the week as a great opportunity for the development and the growth of the sport in the region.

“The Americas Rugby Championship represents a great opportunity for the Game across North and South America,” said IRB Head of Development and Performance Mark Egan. “(It’s) providing a competition format that will generate exciting and competitive matches. It will also allow the participating Unions to take a closer look at the development of their elite players as we look towards Rugby World Cup 2015.”

With the World Cup, Pan American Games and Olympic Games all happening   over the course of   a year, Rugby Canada and all its elite athletes will surely have a busy schedule ahead of them preparing and developing the sport.


Rugby made its first Olympic appearance in 1900 and the sport dates back to 1823 when a school in Rugby, England created a new way to play soccer. The International Rugby Board was formed in 1886, but not officially recognized by the IOC until 1994.

The game is played internationally and has hosted a World Cup event every four years since 1987 when it made its debut in Australia and New Zealand.


Like 15s, the aim is to pass the opposing goal line and touching the ground with the ball without passing it forward. Once the ball crosses the plane, the team scores five points. An additional two points can be scored by kicking the ball through two upright posts. Each game has two halves that last seven minutes apiece.

Photo: Courtesy of Rugby Canada


Canadian Olympic Team Mark

By The Canadian Olympic Committee

By sharing our athletes’ stories, we inspire Canadians through the power of sport.

Olympic Club

Feature Poll

TO2015 Daily RecapSee All

Day 16 Recap: Canada ends Toronto 2015 with 217 medals

Upcoming GamesSee All

2015 Toronto

2015 Toronto

Toronto was awarded the 2015 Pan American Games on November 6, 2009, defeating bids from Lima, Peru and Bogota, Colombia….

Top Team Canada Fans

Al Redpath

Current Level


  • Total: 14172 points
  • Earned this week: 6575 points

Kerri McGregor

Current Level


  • Total: 13210 points
  • Earned this week: 5060 points

Matthew Tully

Current Level


  • Total: 7350 points
  • Earned this week: 25 points

Benn Wood

Current Level


  • Total: 6838 points
  • Earned this week: 3807 points

Beckie Santavy

Current Level


  • Total: 5384 points
  • Earned this week: 1369 points
  • Next Level: Legend
  • Needed: 616 points

Mary Manna

Current Level


  • Total: 5011 points
  • Earned this week: 2107 points
  • Next Level: Legend
  • Needed: 989 points

Blair Munn

Current Level


  • Total: 4114 points
  • Earned this week: 621 points
  • Next Level: Gold
  • Needed: 136 points

Danielle Carreiro

Current Level


  • Total: 4093 points
  • Earned this week: 484 points
  • Next Level: Gold
  • Needed: 157 points

Website by | Programmed by Trew Knowledge | Powered by VIP


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,106 other followers