Canada’s men’s rugby team, which features Hamilton-bred talent, has been struggling to find a win in this Rugby World Cup.
With a pool featuring South Africa and New Zealand, two of the most dominant and storied rugby nations in the world, the Canadian squad has battled in seemingly impossible matches.
With one final match remaining against Namibia, the only nation ranked lower than Canada at the tournament, the Canadian boys look to end on a positive note.
The issue is not necessarily the talent, which Canada has enough of to beat this Namibian team, but more so the legs.
Canada has been decimated in back-to-back matches, losing 63-0 to New Zealand and 66-7 to South Africa, but the effort and dedication of the boys in red has never been questioned.
In their most recent match against the Springboks on Tuesday, they were forced to play a man down for the last 45 minutes of the game after a red card on Canadian lock, Josh Larsen.
Despite being a man down, Canada help the Springboks to only 19 points in the second half, thanks to tremendous defensive efforts by the depleted Canadian crew.
If the class or commitment was still questioned after that game, it was dispelled after actions by Josh Larsen following the game.
Larsen, the receiver of the red card, went into the Springboks locker room after the game and apologized for his conduct, wishing them the best of luck in the tournament.
Team captain and former McMaster Marauder, Tyler Ardron, has promised that this dedication and commitment will continue regardless of the circumstances.
Undoubtedly, this World Cup has proved that Canada has a long way to come before truly competing with the top nations in the world. However, the intangibles that lead to great teams, things like commitment, passion, dedication, and gratitude, have proven that there is promise for the program in the future.
The Canadian team looks forward to proving this commitment on Sunday when they face off against Namibia for their final game of group stages.