Jones, Hirayama to lead Canada

Date published: January 18 2017

Canada Sevens Head Coach Damian McGrath has named a 13-man squad for the next two stops of the World Rugby Series, in Wellington and Sydney.

Justin Douglas, Mike Fuailefau, Nathan Hirayama, Harry Jones, Caleb Jordan, Pat Kay, Karsten Leitner, John Moonlight, Luke McCloskey, Matt Mullins and Adam Zaruba keep their places in McGrath’s travelling group.

Experienced players Hirayama and Jones will captain the side, with John Moonlight stepping aside having been absent due to a firefighting course.

“As John has been unable to train with the team due to course commitments, the team will be captained in New Zealand by Harry Jones and in Australia by Nate Hirayama,” McGrath said. “Moonlight will join up with the squad in Wellington and be available for both legs.

“It’s important to have your leaders around in practice as well as games so it’s great having Nate and Harry to lead the team and they’re just sharing the load so John doesn’t have to worry and he can focus on just playing.”

There is a first senior call-up for Isaac Kaay while Lucas Hammond also returns to the fold.

“Lucas has proven himself on the series before and he’s a great boost to the squad,” McGrath said. “Isaac has impressed me in training, he’s a big physical unit and he will bring that hard edge to some of our forward play. It’s disappointing to lose Liam and Phil but we haven’t loss anything with these additions.”

In Wellington, Canada has been drawn into Pool D with Wales, Scotland and Russia.

Canada Sevens squad for Wellington and Sydney

Justin Douglas, Mike Fuailefau, Lucas Hammond, Nathan Hirayama (cc), Harry Jones (cc), Caleb Jordan, Isaac Kaay, Pat Kay, Karsten Leitner, Luke McCloskey, John Moonlight, Matt Mullins, Adam Zaruba