Pritchard named in Canadian side

Australian James Pritchard, one of the top scorers in the Rugby Canada Super League (RCSL), has been named to the Canadian side to clash with the New Zealand Maori in Calgary on Saturday.

Australian James Pritchard, one of the top scorers in the Rugby Canada Super League (RCSL, has been named to the Canadian side to clash with the New Zealand Maori in Calgary on Saturday.

Pritchard, who broke records with Bedford in England's National Division One qualifies for Canadian citizenship through his grandfather who was born in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan.

The fullback moved to Saskatchewan in May to play for the Prairie Fire in the RCSL, the league which selectors said they would be monitoring for talent for Canada's World Cup team.

"I'm thrilled to be selected and it probably won't hit me until I pull on the jersey. It will be a real challenge to play the Maori," he said.

Prichard showed well in RCSL play, with the Prairie Fire failing to advance to the RCSL championship after a loss in their last game of the season to the Calgary Mavericks.

The Mavericks, from the western division, face off against the eastern division's Toronto Xtreme in the RCSL championship as a curtain raiser to the Canada-Maori game in Calgary.

Canada have made a number of other changes including switching Stade Francaise second rower Mike James to the back row alongside No 8 Phil Murphy and Adam van Staveren.

"I'm looking for a great deal more from the back three. We need them to step up their involvement and make their presence felt in the game," said Canada coach David Clark.

Captain Ryan Banks will move from No 8 to blind-side to make room for Murphy.

Also, two new players - flanker Jim Douglas, who plays with the RCSL Vancouver Wave and Australian second-row/flanker Jeff Reid - have been named among the replacements.

The Maori will play three other games in Canada - in Ottawa on July 30, in Toronto on August 2, and in Red Deer on August 13.

Canada team: Kevin Tkachuk (Oxford University); Mark Lawson (University of Victoria), Garth Cooke (Aurillac), Mike James (Stade Francaise), Colin Yukes (University of Victoria); Ryan Banks (Burnaby Lake), Adam van Staveren (Bayside); Phil Murphy (London Irish), Morgan Williams (Saracens), Bob Ross (James Bay AA), Winston Stanley (Leeds), John Cannon (Rotherham), Nik Witkowski (James Bay AA), Sean Fauth (Hornets), James Pritchard, (Randwick, Sydney). Replacements: Kevin Wirachowski (UBC Old Boy Ravens), Pat Dunkley (James Bay AA), Jim Douglas (UBC Old Boy Ravens), Jeff Reid (Eastwood, Sydney).

More in this section

Sport Newsletter

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up

Select your favourite newsletters and get the best of Irish Examiner delivered to your inbox