Oak Bay’s Tom Abercrombie and Nicholas Carson recently returned from a Canada U18 rugby tournament in Phoenix Arizona. (Submitted photo)

Oak Bay athletes return from ‘intense’ U.S. rugby tournament

Two locals on U18 Canada rugby team

Oak Bay finds itself on both the winning and losing side of a Canada U18 rugby tournament in Arizona to start 2018.

Oak Bay High athletes Tom Abercrombie, 17 and Nicholas Carson, 17, just returned from a Canada U18 rugby tournament in Casa Grande, Arizona, (near Phoenix) against the American All Stars.

The pair were selected for Canada’s U18 team in November after a four-day camp in Vancouver. A total 54 players from across the nation made up two teams to head south and face two U.S. teams.

“From those games Canada will select 24 of us to go play some top level teams in Wales,” said Carson. He and Abercrombie were on separate teams – each played three games.

Carson’s Canadian team won its first game by two points, lost it’s lost second by two points and handily defeated the other Canadian team to finish the tournament.

Abercrombie’s team won its first game and lost the next two. Abercrombie, unfortunately was injured for the final two games, Carson said.

Carson embraced the new experience, travel for high-level rugby.

“It was amazing. It was a whole new experience, next level compared to club and school rugby. It was just so well put together,” said Carson. “It was really intense. I left there a way better player.”

The teams trained a couple hours a day, had a game, then did film review every day for the four days.

“It was pretty cool to see your flaws and then get to practice and fix them within 24 hours,” said Carson who plays 8th man.

Oak Bay High rugby practices start now with games hitting hard after spring break.

The two teams will be whittle down to one U18 team to the head for Wales over spring break.


 

cvanreeuwyk@oakbaynews.com

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