Canada opened the World Rugby Women’s Seven Series in Paris with a renewed sense of purpose, winning its first two games of the tournament in convincing fashion over Russia and Fiji.
The Canadians began Friday destroying Russia 31-5. Ghislaine Landry scored two tries, while Britt Benn, Caroline Crossley and Kayla Molschi also scored.
FT: Two from two for Canada’s Women’s Sevens Team <a href=”https://twitter.com/Paris7s?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@Paris7s</a>, as they defeat <a href=”https://twitter.com/fijirugby?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@fijirugby</a> with a solid performance! <br>🇨🇦21-12🇫🇯<a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/ParisSevens?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#ParisSevens</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/RugbyCA?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#RugbyCA</a>🍁 <a href=”https://t.co/rDTZfWNZdo”>pic.twitter.com/rDTZfWNZdo</a>
In the second game, Canada surrendering the first score to Fiji but scored three straight tries en route to a 21-7 win.
Bianca Farella scored two of Canada’s tries, and Breanne Nicholas added another.
FT: Britt Benn scores another to give Canada an emphatic 31-5 victory over <a href=”https://twitter.com/RugbyRussia?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@RugbyRussia</a> in the first game of the weekend <a href=”https://twitter.com/Paris7s?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@Paris7s</a>!<br>🇨🇦31-5🇷🇺<a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/ParisSevens?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#ParisSevens</a> <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/RugbyCA?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#RugbyCA</a>🍁 <a href=”https://t.co/YtBDXw78Gz”>pic.twitter.com/YtBDXw78Gz</a>
Since the inception of the World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series in 2012, the Canadian women’s 7s team has never finished below third place in the circuit.
But after disappointing fifth and 11th place finishes earlier this year in Langford, B.C., and Kitakyushu, Japan, respectively, the Canadians find themselves in fourth place entering the final tournament in Paris.
With 44 points, Canada trails Australia (74), New Zealand (70) and France (54) for podium contention.
It’s an unfamiliar situation for what has undeniably been the country’s most successful rugby team, with accolades that include a bronze medal from the 2016 Summer Olympics and frequent appearances on World Series podiums.
“It’s been a bit of a roller-coaster this year with the group,” said Britt Benn before the tournament, who returns to the squad after missing the previous tournament in Langford due to injury.
“We’re not changing how we play, we’re just making some adjustments here and there.”
Massive match vs. Australia
The Canadians’ biggest test will come against the first-place Australians, who won the circuit two years ago, and have been runners-up another two times, this afternoon (CBCSports.ca, 2:12 p.m. ET).
For Benn, this season has been about “getting comfortable with the uncomfortable” in a sport with a razor-thin margin for error.
“When we dipped below top three, I think that was a big challenge,” the 29-year-old from Napanee, Ont., said. “We just have to tighten up our game a little bit and make sure that we don’t make those defensive errors or offensive errors.”
Should host France finish fifth or better this weekend, the Canadians would fall short of that proverbial podium. Even a tournament win wouldn’t guarantee a spot in the top three for the squad.
Regardless, these first two matches are a great confidence builder for the squad, who will need to have an exceptional tournament and get some luck to avoid falling off the podium for the first-time ever.
Source : cbc