SPORTS IN BRIEF: Cordova Bay soccer team going to Sweden; Cricket great to visit Beacon Hill; Canada’s early roster released for Rugby World Cup

SPORTS IN BRIEF: Cordova Bay soccer team going to Sweden; Cricket great to visit Beacon Hill; Canada's early roster released for Rugby World Cup

Cordova Bay team going to Sweden

The Cordova Bay Impact under-12 soccer team was named BMO Team of the Week for their fundraising achievements off the pitch this year.

The team is now entered to be the BMO Team of the Week champion for 2011, with a grand prize of $125,000 in refurbishments to their soccer field, a trip to see a Vancouver Whitecaps FC home game and $5,000 to the charity of their choice.

As the BMO Team of the Week, the Impact players win track suits, $500 for the team and $500 towards the charity of their choice.

Catching the BMO judges’ eyes was the Impact’s fundraising efforts to cover the cost of the team’s participation in Sweden’s 2011 Gothia Cup, a world youth soccer tournament with hundreds of teams, held July 17-23.

Community voting for the Team of the Week champion starts Aug. 1 at www.bmosoccer.com.

Cricket great to visit Beacon Hill

Regarded as one of the greatest batsmen of all time, Wasim Akram will be in Victoria on Canada Day to mentor young cricketers.

Akram joins the Victoria District Cricket Association in its celebration of the recent $25,000 improvement award from the RBC Foundation.

The former star of the Pakistan national team will take part in a limited match with local cricket club members at the Beacon Hill cricket pitch before signing autographs, noon to 4:30 p.m.

Early roster for Rugby World Cup

Coach Kieran Crowley has released the early, 50-man Canadian squad for the September Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.

The final cut to a 30-man squad isn’t due until July.

Among the 50, several are Victoria produced players and many others have strong club and developmental ties to the South Island.

Ed Fairhurst, a 2007 World Cup veteran and St. Michaels University School grad, returns to the mix at scrum half, where he is in contention with another local, Sean White, who graduated from Oak Bay High. Other Oak Bay High products hoping to make the cut are second rower Mitch Gudgeon and fly half Connor Braid, as well as their James Bay teammate DTH van der Merwe at wing.

Players with local ties are: hookers Pat Riordan (Vikes), Ryan Hamilton (Vikes) and Mike Pletch (Velox); props Hubert Buydens (Castaway-Wanderers), Scott Franklin (CW), Jason Marshall (James Bay), Andrew Tiedemann (Vikes) and Frank Walsh (CW); second rowers

Brett Beukeboom (Vikes) and Mitch Gudgeon (Oak Bay/James Bay); back rowers Aaron Carpenter (James Bay), Nanyak Dala (CW), Adam Kleeburger (Vikes),

John Moonlight (James Bay), Chauncey O’Toole (CW) and Jebb Sinclair (CW); scrum halves

Kyle Armstrong (CW), Ed Fairhurst (St. Michaels/CW), Jamie Mackenzie (Vikes) and Sean White (Oak Bay/James Bay); fly halves Connor Braid (Oak Bay/James Bay), Nathan Hirayama (Vikes) and Ander Monro (CW); centres Nick Blevins (Velox),

Ryan Smith (CW), Phil Mackenzie (Vikes), Mike Scholz (CW) and Tyler Wish (Vikes); wings Sean Duke (Vikes), DTH van der Merwe (Oak Bay/James Bay), Ciaran Hearn (CW) and Taylor Paris (James Bay).