VICTORIA, B.C. – In a league that is starting to look like it could be anybody’s game on any given day, some of the grittiest rugby of the season will be played in a Saturday showdown between local competitors Castaway Wanderers and the University of Victoria Vikes. After coming off of a too close for comfort 18-13 victory against the UBCOB Ravens last weekend, the Vikes will look to put an exclamation mark on this Saturday’s game and come away with a bigger margin win in their first match that counts towards the Barnard Cup.
Having won their last two games, the Vikes boast 15 points in the standings and are tied with crosstown rivals James Bay, five points back from current leaders the Meralomas. With the return of some of Canada’s biggest names in international sevens rugby, Phil Mack (Victoria, BC), Sean Duke (Vancouver, BC) and Nathan Hirayama (Richmond, BC), the Vikes have some impressive speed and play-making ability in their backline and head coach Doug Tate will be looking to fine-tune his line-up.
“We’re winning but we’re not doing it convincingly so we need to make some adjustments,” said Tate. “It’s going to be more about working together as a group, I haven’t seen the Castaways play but these games can be really close, they’ve got some good up-and-coming players.”
The Castaway Wanderers are somewhat of a new-look team this year with several players from their roster committed to national team programs or out with injury. The Vikes will be forced to contend with the unknown this weekend as they look for their third consecutive win.
The University of Victoria Vikes men’s rugby team play the Oak Bay Castaway Wanderers this Saturday, Nov. 3, at 2:45 p.m. on Wallace Field.