Local players in mix as Shawnigan hosts Junior World Trophy qualifiers

Local players in mix as Shawnigan hosts Junior World Trophy qualifiers

McDougall-Percillier, Tudor-Jones hope to crack Canada’s U20 roster

Two Cowichan Valley players have been invited to attend Rugby Canada’s U20 camp next month in advance of Junior World Trophy Qualifiers against Team USA.

William McDougall-Percillier, a Brentwood College School grad from Mill Bay who recently signed a pro contract with Parisian club Stade Français, and Reese Tudor-Jones, a Shawnigan Lake product and graduate of Shawnigan Lake School, are among 32 players invited to the camp, which runs at Shawnigan from May 18 to June 3 ahead of games on June 4 and 8.

Both players participated in the Canadian University Men’s Rugby Championships last fall, where McDougall-Percillier won a gold medal with the University of British Columbia and Tudor-Jones took bronze with the University of Victoria.

If McDougall-Percillier makes the cut, this will be his third straight year on the Canadian U20 team. He also earned his first caps with the senior national team earlier this year.

The players have trained together multiple times this year already, including games in Portugal and Spain.

The winner of the two-game aggregate series against the U.S. will qualify for the World Rugby Junior World Trophy in Brazil on July 9-21. Since first qualifying for the tournament in 2010, Canada has only missed the event in 2016.

“Our objective is of course to qualify for the Junior World Rugby Trophy this year, but we take our role of developing players for National XV and sevens very seriously,” said Gethin Watts, Rugby Canada’s performance director for age grade programs.

The matches against Team USA will take place at Shawnigan Lake School on June 4 and 8, both kicking off at 5 p.m. Games will also be streamed live on Rugby Canada’s Facebook page.