Rugby Canada is pleased to announce the dates and venues that have been appointed for the 2013 National Women’s League Championships, the U-19 Canadian Rugby Championships, and the National Age-Grade Championships.
The National Women’s League (NWL) tournament features women’s provincial teams from across Canada competing in a round-robin style event and will be held at UBC’s Wolfson Fields from June 29-30.
The U-19 Canadian Rugby Championship will be held at the Calgary Rugby Park from July 17-21 with five teams participating: British Columbia, Prairie Wolf Pack, Ontario Blues, Lower Canada Voyageurs, and Atlantic Rock.
The National Age-Grade Championship (NAGC) will also be held at UBC’s Wolfson Fields from August 7-11 and will feature men and women’s teams in U-16 and U-18 categories.
These events are imperative to Rugby Canada as they offer young athletes an opportunity to compete against other high-level rugby players, and they also provide Rugby Canada’s High Performance staff recruitment and development opportunities.
Canadian National Women’s Head Coach John Tait, whose Sevens squad is ranked among the best in the world, appreciates the NAGC and NWL tournaments for developing players.
“Having all of our teams and age groups competing at the NAGC and NWL is exciting not only for the players, but for the coaching staff as well,” said Tait at the Centre of Excellence in Victoria. “The NAGC provides us with an early opportunity to see future national players and is a major part of the pathway for athletes to develop into world-class athletes.”
Canada’s U20 Men’s head coach, and National Academy Manager, Mike Shelley explains the value of each event: “For the coaches, these tournaments provide the highest level of age-grade competition and it gives our high-performance staff a chance to see the best play against the best,” said Shelley in Langford.
“The U-16 tournament is where athletes are first spotted for national programs and it’s used as a benchmark in the development process towards the national teams,” added Shelley”. “The U-18 tournament is important because it’s an opportunity to measure their development and the U-19 is a selection tool for the following year’s Junior World Trophy.”
With events like the 2016 and 2020 Olympics and the 2014 and 2015 women and men’s Rugby World Cups in the near future, developing players at an early age is imperative for Canadian Rugby.
June 29 – 30: National Women’s League - UBC Wolfson Fields
July 17 – 21: Canadian Rugby Championships Under 19 – Calgary Rugby Park
August 7 – 11: National Age-Grade Championship – UBC Wolfson Fields