TORONTO, ON – The New Zealand Maori All Blacks showed their class on Sunday defeating Canada 40-15 in front of a packed crowd of 22,566 passionate rugby fans at BMO Field in Toronto. The afternoon contest would break records as the largest crowd in not only Canadian and North American rugby history, but also history for BMO Field.
Canada refused to back down from the opening whistle, scoring an opening try thanks to Jeff Hassler but ultimately fell to the Maori All Blacks.
The Maori All Blacks utilized their whole roster in the game with reserve Jamison Gibson-Park scoring two tries in the victory.
Canada started the game off with a bang. After a powerful haka from the Maori All Blacks, Hassler shocked everyone in attendance as the winger as he scored the opening try of the game.
Liam Underwood would miss the conversion attempt, but Canada put themselves in the lead just moments after the opening whistle.
From there, the Maori All Blacks took over, scoring 19 unanswered points to end the half. The Maori side received their first try from Zac Guildford. However, Andre Taylor missed his opening kick to tie the score at five a piece.
From there, Gibson-Park and Robbie Robinson added tries while Taylor found his footing to put the Maoris up by 14 points heading into the half.
The second half opened with Canada putting on more pressure, looking to capitalize just like the first half but it was the Maoris scoring first.
Following a converted try from Gibson-Park, Liam Underwood responded with a penalty in the fifty-fifth minute.
Just moments later, Canada came together collectively to force the Maoris back deep into their own zone before captain Aaron Carpenter took matters into his own hands.
The Number 8 ended up under a pile of bodies in the try zone as Canada momentarily pulled themselves within eleven points of the New Zealand side.
That would be all the scoring Canada would receive on Sunday as the Maori All Blacks added two more converted tries towards the end of the game.
Canada will now set off on a European tour where they will face Georgia, Romania, and Portugal.
Tries: Hassler, Carpenter
Maori All Blacks 40
Tries: Guildford, Gibson-Park 2, Robinson, Proctor, Barrett
Conversion: Taylor 2, Robinson 2, West
Canada lock Tyler Ardron:
“Too many errors let us down, I mean I think the coaches gave us what we needed but it’s on ourselves for that one.”
“Proud I think is the best word, I mean rugby is really building in Canada. It’s unreal to have these kind of crowds and hopefully we gave them a game that they’re going to enjoy and want to come back to.“
Canada Coach Kieran Crowley:
“We turned over the ball too much. We played a lot of rugby in that first half and they scored against us a few times. In the second half we changed things but not enough. So I mean we played a lot of rugby but not in the right areas and they obviously deserved to win it."
“You look at what you’re playing against and it’s a New Zealand team that all play professionally, so you’re always going to be under pressure. If we go one more pass away or if we’re being a little more patient then maybe things are different but it wasn’t to be."
“If you’re playing at that level all the time then you can handle the pressure more. I think we’re welcoming five or six guys back for the next one so we’ll see, I mean there were some pretty good performances from the other guys who went out today so we’ll have to see who comes out.”
New Zealand Coach Colin Cooper:
“We knew Canada would come out aggressively, but they surprised us with their expansive game and that early try showed that."
“They also didn’t kick the ball long so that meant we couldn’t counter attack as we planned. So we had to work hard and fortunately secured some good turnovers, which resulted in tries."
“We were certainly forced to dig deep and responded well. To Canada’s credit, they kept testing us, but I was really impressed with the effort the players put in given we have only been together for a week and had a long journey to get here."
New Zealand Captain Tim Bateman:
“They probably caught us off guard for a large part of the game, so in that sense they played really well. But on the flip side we were really heady with our turnover attack and made the most of the opportunities we got. So there’s a lot of positives but a few things we’ll want to tidy up next week."
“This crowd was outstanding, it really was. They were loud and it was a great atmosphere. I hope they enjoyed it because both teams played really hard, so I hope they were entertained."
Canada’s Roster for New Zealand Maori All Blacks Game
1- Hubert Buydens, (Saskatoon Wild Oats/Manawatu Turbos) Saskatoon, SK
2- Ray Barkwill, (Niagara Wasps RFC/Ontario Blues) Niagara Falls, ON
3- Doug Wooldridge, (Lindsay RFC/Ontario Blues) Lindsay, ON
4- Jon Phelan, (Lille Métropole Rugby/Atlantic Rock) Montreal, QC
5- Tyler Ardron, (Ospreys/Ontario Blues) Lakefield, ON
6- Nanyak Dala, (Castaway Wanderers/Prairie Wolf Pack) Saskatoon, SK
7- John Moonlight, (James Bay AA/Ontario Blues) Pickering, ON
8- Aaron Carpenter, Captain, (Cornish Pirates) Brantford, ON
9- Phil Mack, (James Bay AA/BC Bears) Victoria, BC
10- Liam Underwood, (Queens University/Ontario Blues) Toronto, ON
11- Conor Trainor, (UBCOB Ravens/BC Bears) Vancouver, BC
12- Harry Jones, (Capilano RFC/BC Bears) West Vancouver, BC
13- Ciaran Hearn, (Castaway Wanderers/Atlantic Rock) Conception Bay, NL
14- Jeff Hassler, (Ospreys/Prairie Wolf Pack) Okotoks, AB
15- Matt Evans, (Cornish Pirates) Maple Bay, BC
16- Jake Ilnicki, (Williams Lake Rustlers/Auckland Colts) Williams Lake, BC
17- Ryan March, (Abbotsford RFC/BC Bears) Abbotsford, BC
18- Aaron Flagg, (Abbotsford RFC/BC Bears) Abbotsford, BC
19- Kyle Gilmour, (St. Albert Rugby Club/Prairie Wolf Pack) Edmonton, AB
20- Adam Kleeberger, (Castaway Wanderers/BC Bears) White Rock, BC
21- Jamie Mackenzie, (UVIC Vikes/Ontario Blues) Oakville, ON
22- Pat Parfrey, (Swilers RFC/Atlantic Rock) St. John’s, NL
23- Connor Braid, (James Bay AA/BC Bears) Victoria, BC
Senior Men’s Team Staff:
Kieran Crowley – Head Coach
Gareth Rees – National Program Manager
Neil Barnes – Assistant Coach
Mike Shelley – Assistant Coach
Calum Ramsay – Performance Analyst
Andy Evans – Strength and Conditioning
Danielle Mah – Physiotherapist
Carrie Smith – Physiotherapist
Dr. Joseph Lemoine – Team Doctor
Bryan Kelly – Media Coordinator
Maori All Blacks Roster to face Canada
1. Kane Hames* Ngai Tuhoe/Ngati Porou Bay of Plenty
2. Hikawera Elliot Ngati Awa Counties Manukau
3. Ben Afeaki Ngati Awa North Harbour
4. Jarrad Hoeata Ngati Kahungunu / Ngai Tuhoe Taranaki
5. Joe Wheeler* Ngai Tahu Tasman
6. Liam Squire* Ngai Tahu Tasman
7. Luke Braid* Ngati Tumutumu Auckland
8. Elliot Dixon Ngapuhi Southland
9. Jamison Gibson-Park Ngati Porou/Ngai Tai Taranaki
10. Tim Bateman Ngai Tahu Wellington
11. Zac Guildford* Ngati Kahunganu/Ngai Tahu Hawke's Bay
12. Jackson Willison Ngati Mahuta Waikato
13. Charlie Ngatai Ngati Porou/Te Whanau-a-Apanui Wellington
14. Andre Taylor Ngati Tuwharetoa/Ngati Kahungunu Taranaki
15. Robbie Robinson Ngati Tuwharetoa/ Ngati Tahinga Southland
16. Chris Eves* Tainui Manawatu
17. Nick Barrett* Ngati Kahungunu Southland
18. Ash Dixon* Ngati Tahinga Hawke's Bay
19. Blade Thomson* Ngapuhi Taranaki
20. Shane Christie Te Atihaunui A Paparangi Tasman
21. Ihaia West* Ngati Kahungunu /Ngati Porou Hawke's Bay
22. Matt Proctor* Ngai te Rangi/Ngapuhi Wellington
CANADA vs. NEW ZEALAND MAORI ALL BLACKS
Sunday, November 3rd, 2013
Canada 15-40 Maori All Blacks
BMO Field, Toronto, ON
LIVE on TSN
CANADA vs. GEORGIA
Saturday, November 9th, 2013
Kick off 2pm local time – 5am ET/2am PT
CANADA vs. ROMANIA
Saturday, November 16th, 2013
Kick off 4:30pm local time – 9:30am ET/6:30am PT
CANADA vs. PORTUGAL
Saturday, November 23rd, 2013
Kick off 3pm local time – 10am ET/7am PT