2023 World Rugby Pacific Four Series PHOTO: Andre Ringuette/Freestyle Photography
The Canadian women take a memorable win at TD Place Stadium against the Wallaroos. It was a convincing victory, with defense playing a big role in Canada’s victory over Australia.
Canadian women score memorable victory with fantastic performance in Ottawa
full game summary
Full Game Summary:
Tyson Beukeboom and Sarah-Maude Lachance had fantastic games to #RugbyCA.
Rugby Canada’s defense was solid.
—Raheem (@bashirra) July 16, 2023
Tyson Beukeboom and Sarah-Maude Lachance had memorable games on Friday
Two players who didn’t get their due are Beukeboom and Lachance. Both players really played well in Friday’s game. Beukeboom in particular was fantastic for Canada, scoring three tries in the impressive 45-7 win over Australia.
- In all the tries, Beukeboom put himself in good positions to score the try. Big credit must be given to Gabrielle Senft on Beukeboom’s third down as she was able to find and pass the ball to Beukeboom on her third down of the game.
- Lachance also played very well, scoring his first career try for the national team and making great defensive tackles for Canada.
A day you will never forget! 👏
— Rugby World Cup (@WorldRugby) July 15, 2023
There were plenty of other players who played exceptionally well, including one we’ll talk about later. However, these two players deserve credit for their performance on Friday against Australia. Here’s what Beukeboom had to say after scoring a hat trick in his 60th appearance as a Canadian.
“It’s everything. It’s a great honor to be able to put on this jersey in first place almost 60 times and to be able to do it in front of the crowd and score three points, which I’ve never done and probably never will again.”
Canadian women’s defense was strong against the Wallaroos
Canada really put on a fantastic and gutsy effort against Australia on Friday. Their solid defense forced Australia into some uncharacteristic turnovers and errors.
- The most striking was that of Bella McKenzie kicking the ball deep into her team’s end. This resulted in Beukeboom scoring the hat trick of hers.
- Australia turned the ball over as they could not release it, allowing Canada to gain possession.
- Canada pushed the Aussies deep into their half with their fantastic tackle in the 61st minute.
These were just two of many examples where Canada dominated defensively and only allowed Australia the one try they scored in the first half. After a shaky start, Canada looked compact defensively and didn’t allow the Wallaroos any leeway to score tries.
The Wallaroos made too many turnovers/mistakes
Yes, Canada put a lot of pressure on Australia. However, there were also some uncharacteristic mistakes the Aussies made. In the second half, for example, they looked less comfortable on the ball and threw some errand passes that resulted in turnovers. Examples include:
- Bree-Anna Cheatham dropped the ball in the 56th minute.
- Throw-in turnover with Australia’s McKenzie lineout.
Fortunately, on the second lineout play, Canada turned the ball over immediately after. However, Canada took advantage of many of those errors and Australia looked tired in the latter part of the game due to Canada’s relentless defense and tackling.
Other factors: Sophie de Goede and the Canadian women’s scrums
This writer has said this before, but de Goede gets a lot of props for his fantastic work. He did well with his kicks, landing five of his seven kicks. What can also be said were the scrums, which Australia had trouble dealing with.
- The trial leading up to Lachane’s trial began as Canada pushed Australia back due to their scrum. Sophie de Goede then started that play, which resulted in a series of passes and resulted in a try by Lachane.
- There was another instance of Canada forcing Australia deep into their final, as Australia had trouble dealing with pressure from Canada.
It’s also important to note that de Goede also scored two tries in the game and might have been Canada’s second-best player in the game.
This is not to say that everything was perfect. Canada fumbled a bit to start the game and Australia got McKenzie to score a try to tie the game 7-7 apiece at that point. In the end though, it was Canada who ended up victorious in Canada’s capital. This game also marks the second time in a row that The Canadians have defeated the Australians in the Pacific Four Series. Also, Claire Gallagher scored a beautiful try, where she noted the laxity of Australia’s defense and scored a fantastic individual try in the second half.
What the Black Ferns’ victory means for Canadian women and Wallaroos
— Black Ferns (@BlackFerns) July 14, 2023
New Zealand won the Pacific Four Series for the second time in a row. They got a scare with the USA as they trailed after the end of the first half. However, New Zealand were able to recover and dominate the second half with a come-from-behind victory. Black Ferns’ win also means Canada and Australia would be in WVX1’s inaugural competition. The top three teams from the Pacific Four Series will play in the WVX1 competition in New Zealand, which will also feature the top three teams from the Women’s Six Nations Championship. The three to come from the Women’s Six Nations Championship competition are England, France and Wales. That tournament will take place in October/November.
Should Ottawa be the permanent home of the Rugby Canada women’s national team?
This is a question that might need an answer. The largest crowd at a Canadian women’s rugby match was in the match against New Zealand, where more than 10,000 fans attended the match. The game against Australia also had a solid crowd at the game. It’s a question that might bother people outside the nation’s capital, but Ottawa has shown it can support a high-quality rugby union and it’s something Rugby Canada has taken notice of. Maybe I can also drive Ottawa to support a major/professional rugby league and/or rugby league team one day.