Women’s rugby sevens qualifies for Rio, makes history
UPDATE (May 23, 2015): After qualifying for the Olympic Games, the Canada women’s sevens team went on to win the tournament in Amsterdam.
The national women’s sevens squad made history on Friday becoming the first-ever Canadian rugby team to qualify for an Olympic Games.
Two round robin victories on Friday in Amsterdam at the last stop of the World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series ensured Canada would get enough points to be one of the top four nations in the 2014-15 season. That standing results in an automatic Rio 2016 berth for the Rugby Canada squad.
The first wins came against Spain and Netherlands. With tries from Ghislaine Landry, Bianca Farella, Karen Paquin, Magali Harvey and Britt Benn, Canada routed Spain 29-0. That was followed up by a 34-10 thumping of host Netherlands in which Landry had a hat-trick and additional tries were scored by Paquin, Benn and captain Jen Kish.
Canada ended the day a perfect 3-0 beating France in the two teams’ final match on Friday 26-5. Harvey, Benn, and Paquin all scored tries, which were successfully converted by Landry. Hannah Darling had the only unconverted try for Canada.
Canada will play France again to start the quarterfinals on Sunday. The French are desperate for a victory as the United States – after matching Canada’s 3-0 round robin start – are poised to lock up the fourth and final Olympic qualification spot from the sevens series should France and England stumble in the quarterfinals.
Canada became the third country to qualify for Olympic women’s rugby sevens, after New Zealand last week and Australia earlier in the day.