Rugby sevens invade Buccaneer Days festival at Bullen Park

James Bay Athletic Association hosts the Buccaneer 7s tournament, part of the B.C. rugby sevens series, June 9 at Bullen Park

National sevens captain Phil Mack

Canada’s under-20 rugby match against visiting St. Andrew’s University of Scotland will headline the Buccaneer 7s rugby tournament at Bullen Park on Saturday (June 9).

“It’s going to be such a great day with the Canadian U20s playing, featuring local players. Part of an exciting day of rugby sevens,” said co-organizer Tom Woods.

The ex-national team rugby player admits the sevens team put forth by his alma mater, James Bay Athletic Association, will have a tough time defending its title this weekend.

“We’ve got some steady veterans with international experience, such as Dan Harlow and Jeff Williams,” he said. “But the skill of the Burnaby Lighthouse team and the speed of the Untouchables, which is made up of UVic Vikes, are going to be really strong.”

Also competing in the men’s division is a mixed team of Castaway Wanderers and Velox Valhallians on the Southsea Connection, a team from Western Washington University, and a rep team of under-18 B.C. players.

The sevens tournament begins at 8 a.m. and also includes a four-team premier women’s division and a four-team under-16 boys division.

The U20 match starts at 5 p.m. and is a final tune-up prior to Canada’s departure to the IRB Junior Rugby World Trophy in Salt Lake City, Utah, June 18 to 30.

The world trophy roster features plenty of locals, including Esquimalt High grad Andrew McGinn of James Bay, Mike Dalsin of CW) and Michael Fuailefau, a CW player with the UVic Vikes.

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