The Canadian NSMT renews its rivalry with Samoa after a twelve-year gap this Friday, as the sides meet in the IRB International Rugby Series at Parc Eirias, Colwyn Bay, Wales.
The match will be available both live on TSN starting at 3pm ET/12pm PT, rebroadcast at 8 30pm ET/5 30pm PT, as well as online through the Rugby Canada website.
The last time the sides met was in the Samoan capital, Apia, during the Pacific Rim Championship of 2000. The home team won that game 41-22, to repeat the victory they achieved the year before.
The game of May 1999, held in Vancouver, was the first ever meeting between the nations, and also saw a Samoan victory, by the narrower margin of 17-13.
Current NSMT team manager Gareth Rees captained the Canadian side that day, and contributed two penalty goals and a conversion, with Winston Stanley scoring the only try of the game for the home team.
Rees knows that the Samoans pose a real threat to his side: “They are a very good side, all full professionals. They are a confident side, as we saw during their performances in the Pacific Nations Cup.
They have a very strong coaching staff, with a pretty impressive group of leaders there.”
Samoa lie three places higher than Canada in the IRB rankings, in tenth position. With the latest rankings to be announced next Tuesday, this game could affect Canada’s position in that list, so a good result is needed to maintain the great position held at the moment.
“This series is an important next step for us after the CRC and the ARC to identify players. This is the next test for the players to show that they can play at the next level up,” Rees added.
The team to play Samoa on Friday is as follows –
Name (Club, CRC Club), Hometown
1. Hubert Buydens (Saskatoon Wild Oats/Prairie Wolf Pack) Saskatoon, SK
2. Ray Barkwill (Niagara, Oakville Crusaders/Ontario Blues) Niagara Falls, ON
3. Doug Wooldridge (Lindsay RFC/Ontario Blues) Lindsay, ON
4. Jon Phelan (Ste-Anne-de-Bellvue/The Rock) Montreal, QC
5. Tyler Hotson (London Scottish RFC) Vancouver, BC
6. Tyler Ardron (Brantford Harlequins/Ontario Blues) Lakefield, ON
7. Chauncey O’Toole (Brigand Ravens)Belleisle, NB
8. Aaron Carpenter (Plymouth Albion RFC) Brantford, ON(C)
9. Sean White (James Bay AA/Pacific Tyee) Victoria, BC
10. Connor Braid (James Bay AA/Pacific Tyee) Victoria, BC
11. Matt Evans (Cornish Pirates) Duncan, BC
12. Phil Mackenzie (London Welsh) Oakville, ON
13. Ciaran Hearn (Castaway Wanderers/The Rock) Conception Bay, NL
14. Taylor Paris (Glasgow Warriors) Barrie, ON
15. James Pritchard (Bedford Blues) Parkes, NSW, Australia
16. Ryan Hamilton (Capilano/Pacific Tyee) West Vancouver, BC
17. Jason Marshall (Aurillac) North Vancouver, BC
18. Andrew Tiedemann (FC Auch Gers) St. Albert, AB
19. Brett Beukeboom (Plymouth Albion RFC) Lindsay, ON
20. John Moonlight (James Bay AA/Ontario Blues) Pickering, ON
21. Eric Wilson (Meraloma RC) Vancouver, BC
22. Nick Blevins (Calgary Hornets/Prairie Wolf Pack) Calgary, AB
23. Jeff Hassler (Okotoks RFC/Prairie WolfPack) Okotoks, AB
Ray Barkwill comes in at hooker for his first senior appearance, having made a great impact with CRC Champions Ontario Blues.
There are a total of nine changes to the starting line-up from the previous full NSMT fixture against Georgia in June. The front row has had wholesale change, with Jon Phelan now partnering Tyler Hotson in the second row.
Sean White comes in at scrum-half, with Connor Braid partnering him at fly-half.
Matt Evans moves to the left wing, with Ciaran Hearn at outside half and Taylor Paris, fresh from his full Glasgow Warriors debut last weekend, on the right wing.
Samoa will be captained by winger David Lemi, who plays for Worcester Warriors in the Aviva Premiership. Other Premiership players include flankers Maurie Fa’asavalu (Harlequins) and Ofisa Treviranus (London Irish).
The game kicks off at 20:15 local time (16:15ET/13:15PT) with live updates on Rugby Canada Twitter feed (@RugbyCanada) followed by the full match report at www.rugbycanada.ca
Men's Fall UK Tour
Friday, November 9th, 2012
Canada v. Samoa
Kick off at 3 15pm ET/12 15 PT
LIVE broadcast on TSN starts at 3pm ET/12pm PT
Rebroadcast on TSN at 8 30pm ET/5 30pm PT
Saturday, November 17th, 2012
Canada v. Russia
Kick off at 3 15pm ET/12 15 PT
Delay broadcast on TSN starts at 8pm ET/ 5pm PT
Friday, November 23rd, 2012
Canada v. NZ Maori
Kick off at 2 30pmET/11 30am PT
No TV/webstream coverage