Canadian women win Hong Kong 7s
Published Friday, March 25, 2011 5:00 am
by Tom Kennedy, Rugby Canada Communications

The Canadian women's sevens team has slammed its way through the Hong Kong Women's Rugby Sevens with an impressive undefeated championship performance.

Competing in the tournament championship in Hong Kong Stadium on Friday night, having already played four pool games, Canada defeated France 28-14 to win the final.

Canada's Mandy Marchak (Capilano RFC) said the team was understandably exhausted by the end of the day but had time to catch their breath to celebrate the exciting win.

“I don't think it's hit a lot of us, but we're all excited,” she said. “The atmosphere was amazing. It definitely helped us play with more heart.”

Most impressive of all was not the performances of the team, which wracked up a massive 189 points while only allowing 28 over the course of the tournament, but the belief there was always room to improve.

“We're all really pleased with how we did, but we all know we can play better,” Marchak said.

Coach John Tait felt the same about the championship and said he was impressed with his team's stamina toward the end.

“Although we won in the final, at that point of the day it was a bit of a war of attrition, so we couldn't show that big crowd how good we really were,” Tait said. “They really won through mental toughness. We didn't play that well in the final and we still dominated France.”

The championship game against France saw Canada lead for the entire game, through doubles to Ashley Patzer and Ghislaine Landry.

Landry kicked two conversions and France bounced back to score two late tries, but the championship win for Canada was secured.

In pool play at the Hong Kong Football Club on Friday, Canada defeated Japan 31-0, Chinese Taipei 64-0, Russia 40-7 and U.S.A. 26-7.

Tait said the team's diligent fitness work between Las Vegas and Hong Kong was key to their performance.

“The girls pretty much ran a marathon and a half today and they played exceptionally well,” he said. “The biggest thing that won us the tournament was the work they did between tournaments. There were massive improvements in their aerobic fitness.”

In addition to their impressive points for and against record, Canada's Landry was the top try scorer, with nine, and Patzer was the leading points scorer, with 58.

Tait said the team would take a week off to rest before returning to training for their next tournament in Amsterdam in May.

“If winning the world cup or a gold medal is the team's goal, we still need to be better,” he said.

Canada 31 – Japan 0
Tries: Mandy Marchak, Ashley Patzer, Ghislaine Landry (3).
Conversions: Marchak (2) and Patzer.

Canada 64 - Chinese Taipei 0
Tries: Marchak, Arielle Dubissette- Borrice (3), Patzer, Landry (2), Jen Kish, Kelsey Willoughby (2).
Converts: Marchak, Patzer (6).

Canada 40 – Russia 7
Tries: Marchak (2), Brittany Waters, Landry, Kelly Russell, Magali Harvey.
Converts: Patzer (5).

Canada 26 – U.S.A. 7
Tries: Marchak, Waters, Landry, Harvey.
Converts: Patzer (3).

Cup final
Canada 28 – France 14
Tries: Patzer (2), Landry (2).
Converts: Patzer (4).

The team:
Name Club/University
Arielle Dubissette-Borrice, Toronto Nomads, ON/ Western University
Magali Harvey, Club de Rugby de Quebec/St. Francis-Xavier University
Jen Kish, Edmonton Lep Tigers, AB
Ghislaine Landry, Toronto Scottish RFC, ON & Bath Rugby, UK
Mandy Marchak, Capilano RFC & Saracens, UK
Barbra Mervin, Velox Valkyries, BC
Ashley Patzer, Lethbridge RC, AB
Kelly Russell, Toronto Nomads, ON
Brittany Waters, Meraloma Athletic Club, BC
Kelsey Willoughby, Lethbridge RC, AB/ University of Lethbridge

John Tait, Head Coach
Sandro Fiorino, Assistant Coach
Kristy Martin Hale, Manager
Laura Libby, Therapist

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