Rugby Sevens: Canada’s path to 2020 Tokyo Olympics lots less difficult if U.S. Stays hot


Canadians aren’t any strangers to cheering on Americans, however on the subject of this season of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, it’s a have-to.

The Americans have performed in all five finals this match season and subsequently received their first name per week ago. That all provides up to the first area overall within the series standings, a compelling statement approximately in which the American program has stepped forward in 4 years below head train Mike Friday.


It additionally comes with a healthy dose of the right information for the Canadians. In reality, Canadian train Damian McGrath is brutally sincere approximately what it approach.

“The USA is doing us a huge favor,” he stated this week. A favor? Well, if the Americans end this season within the top 4 of the standings, they’ll robotically qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. (This season’s pinnacle, four groups qualify for Tokyo.)

Automatic qualification for the Americans might do away with them from the North American Olympic qualifying event that’s slated for July 6-7 within the Cayman Islands.

Canada might be the odds-on preferred to win that event as all different groups might be absolutely novice. Jamaica turned into the best other North American crew to play in last summer’s Rugby World Cup Sevens, and they finished closing.

For rugby sevens’ 2016 Olympic debut in Rio, the Canadians misplaced the North American qualifying very last to the Americans. They played in a final-danger event for the 12th and final spot at Rio but bombed out of that occasion.

If the Americans qualify and the Canadians are passed the very best street they can find, McGrath insists his squad will take total benefit. “If we’re prepared properly, and we’re given the possibility … I just assume that inside the subsequent three hundred and sixty-five days, we’ll see an extraordinary Canada. We’ve were given a focus,” he stated.

“What’s just happened during the last six to eight months, I’m now not amazed we’re struggling a touch bit,” he said, alluding to a settlement dispute closing summer among his players and Rugby Canada management. The players ignored almost months of preseason training as an end result.

“We’re an extended manner off the pace physically. Plus, we don’t have an S and C (power and conditioning teach, cut because of investment constraints). It’s like going into a boxing match with each arm tied behind your again. Given the occasions, I’m satisfied … We’re getting stronger as the year is going on,” McGrath stated.

“The dispute introduced the organization collectively.”