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Rugby - 25. January 2011.

Fifty women's players to Las Vegas for Camp and tournament in February

Victoria, BC - Fifty of Canada's top female rugby prospects have been
selected for a training camp and subsequent Sevens tournament in Las Vegas
in February.

rugby canada-Fifty womens players to Las Vegas for Camp and tournament in February

The group at the training camp will give Women's Sevens and Fifteens head
coach John Tait a chance to work closely in identifying top prospects for
both his interests, but with a focus on the short game at this particular

"We will use this camp to gauge were the majority of our athletes are in
regards to skill level and conditioning," explained Tait. "With the camp
preceding the tournament it will allow all of the athletes much needed
Sevens experience and our top players to see how they currently measure up
against key opponents."

The players arrive in Nevada on February 5th, with fitness testing,
individual skill assessment and development taking place from the 6th to the
9th.  From there two teams (Maple Leaf Black and Maple Leaf Red) will
participate in the Women's Open Division on February 10th and 11th. Then on
February 11th the Elite International Women's  Division begins with Canada
and Maple Leafs teams participating.  Although the primary objective of the
camp will be about assessing the athletes there will be also a focus on team
preparation as the camp builds into the tournament to ensure the teams are
ready to compete.

The whole effort leads to the selection of twelve athletes that will make up
the Canada team at the Hong Kong Sevens in March.

For Tait, the prospect of seeing his players for the first time since his
appointment in November is exciting, especially with the 2016 Rio Olympic
Games very much in the minds of the participating athletes.

"There is a distinct possibility this camp will include some of the women
who will represent Canada and go for Gold in RIO 2016 Olympics which is
exciting for me as a coach," he says.  He also added "There will be Regional
Talent Identification opportunities throughout April and May for those not
attending this Camp, as we must leave no stone unturned in looking for
talented athletes with potential to make Canada a force internationally in
both Sevens and Fifteens in the years ahead."

The camp and tournament represents a huge undertaking for Manager of Women's
Rugby, Kristy Martin Hale, who takes on the task as Sevens manager following
a successful stint at the helm of the National Senior Women's Team at the
Women's Rugby World Cup in England this past August.

"This is the largest assembly of potential national athletes that our
Women's Program has conducted in years," she explains. "It will be an
exciting opportunity to see representation from coast to coast, world cup
athletes to current U20 athletes, both those with previous Sevens experience
and those from a Fifteen-aside background.

"The logistics for international travel for a group this size have been
complex, but everyone is eager for the opportunity to see and participate in
Sevens first hand.”

While some may question having the camp for a national team in the USA, in
actual fact the cost of flights and accommodation were lower in a hub
destination such as Las Vegas, than holding it anywhere in Canada. Throw in
20 C temperatures and sunny conditions and the ground work for a successful
camp was laid.

Player/Home Province
Jocelyn Barrieau QUE
Laura Belvedere QUE
Natalie Bendavid ONT
Brittany Benn ONT
Tyson Beukeboom NS
Marie-Josee Blais QUE
Courtney  Blum  ONT
Andrea  Burk BC
Shannon Court AB
Jessica  Dovanne BC
Arielle Dubissette-Borrice ONT
Tara  Eckert AB
Andrea  Letal AB
Genevieve  Gay YK
Megan Gibbs ONT
Magali Harvey NS
Megan Hamm BC
Susan Heald ONT
Alexandra Hendricks AB
Lori Josephson ONT
Michelle  Joslin ONT
Shannon Kane BC
Jennifer Kish AB
Amanda Lalonde AB
Ghislaine Landry UK
Mandy Marchak UK
Caitlin  McNally ONT
Evelyn McGunigal AB
Barbara Mervin BC
Kayla Moleschi BC
Jacey Murphy ONT
Brittany Orr AB
Ashley Patzer AB
Darcy Patterson BC
Cheryl  Phillips ONT
Jocelyn Poirier ONT
Mirela Rahneva ONT
Kendra Reeves AB
Kelly Russell ONT
Laura Russell ONT
Laura  Stoughton AB
Julia Sugawara BC
Amanda Thornborough NS
Natasha Turner ONT
Andrea Wadsworth ONT
Brittany Waters BC
Kelsey Willoughby AB
Charlotte  Vallières Villeneuve QUE
Emily Young BC

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photos Janos Schmidt 

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