Canada returns to the championship of the Women’s International 7s Invitational and will look to defend their title against the USA. But the defending champions aren’t satisfied with their performance against France.
“I wasn’t really pleased with the way we played,” Canada coach John Tait said. “We made a lot of mental errors and poor decisions. We didn’t look like we were playing the same game the whole way.”
Even though Canada walked away with a 21-12 win, the team was not the polished, connected squad that had put 80 points between themselves and their three pool play opponents yesterday.
“We’ve identified a couple of areas where our decision-making needs work,” Tait said. “We’re learning from it but it’s frustrating. We’ve played better than that.”
Canada has a very experienced roster, if you’re considering international experience; many played in the 2010 Rugby World Cup. But they don’t have a ton of 7s experience.
“Even our most experienced athletes are inexperienced,” Tait said. “The most experienced girls on the team have played a couple of years of 7s sporadically, but that’s only seven or eight international tournament in their lives.”
There were some highlights during the game, most notably Canada’s lineout defense, but Tait had trouble identifying many high points other than that.
“WE played like individuals,” Tait said. “WE took a couple of their turnovers in for points, but we weren’t creating many opportunities. … We’re not going to keep winning tough games like that with mental errors; we got off the hook a couple of times there.”
The positive angle of a subpar performance is the desire to fulfill potential in the subsequent outing – not that Canada would need any more motivation in playing the USA.
“We’re lucky to have an opportunity to play in the final,” Tait said. “I’m happy to get another chance to play the USA. They’ve improved a lot since we played them in Dubai. They’ve been doing a lot of work and Ric [Suggitt] is really buying into the whole program.”
Canada won comfortably in the teams’ Dubai match, but Tait said the team got some lucky bounces and the USA hurt themselves with some turnovers that went Canada’s way.
“I know it’s going to be tough out there,” Tait said. “Hopefully we’ll get some good IRB officiating for the game. We need the top refs in order to get better.”
The final will occur tomorrow inside Sam Boyd Stadium.