WAVERLEY: A Fall River rugby player will hear her name called when Rugby Canada announces its Under-18 7s roster for the 2023 Commonwealth Youth Games in August.
Charlotte Hilton received word this week that she will be on the roster for the championships, taking place in Trinidad and Tobago from Aug 4-11. The news was passed along to The Laker News by her proud dad, Tim.
The rugby portion of the Commonwealth Youth Games will feature six women’s and six men’s teams competing at Shaw Park Cultural Complex on Tobago from August 6-8.
Along with Canada, the women’s competition will include Trinidad and Tobago, Fiji, Wales, Kenya and Australia, and the men’s competition will include Trinidad and Tobago, Fiji, Jamaica, Scotland, and South Africa.
Hilton, a Lockview High student, is excited to get to play with Canada on such a high-calibre stage.
Canada’s women’s team will be coached by Darcy Patterson, assistant coach with the University of British Columbia (UBC) and head coach of UBC’s CanWest winning sevens program.
Patterson also coached BC to a gold medal last summer at the inaugural Canada Summer Games rugby sevens competition and led a U18 team at the World School Sevens in December. This will be Patterson’s second Commonwealth Youth Games, as she was an assistant coach with Canada’s silver medal winning women’s team in 2017.
Canada’s full rosters (including alternates) will be announced in June. Selection for the women’s team will be based on nominations from provincial unions, with trials taking place across Canada for the nominated players in advance of final selection.
“Sending U18 sevens teams to compete at a tournament like the Commonwealth Youth Games is a significant component of the work we are doing to build up the future of Canadian rugby,” said Sean White, Canada’s Men’s Sevens Team interim Head Coach in a release.
“As a development tool, tournaments like this are unmatched. But more than that, being at a multi-sport Games surrounded by other young high-performance athletes is a special moment for players, one of the many that their rugby future holds. ”
Jack Hanratty, Canada’s Women’s Sevens head coach said the Commonwealth Youth Games is a valuable development opportunity and a big step in re-establishing a pathway to representing Canada at the senior level.
“Many players who represented Canada at this unique youth multi-sport experience in the past are now representing Canada on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series or in international 15s competition,” he said.