RWC 2021 Spotlight: Canada

We continue our countdown to the Rugby World Cup 2021 Draw by taking a look at Canada’s history in the tournament.

Canada contested the first-ever women’s Rugby World Cup match, losing 24-8 to New Zealand at Glamorgan Wanderers’ Memorial Ground. They have been one of the more successful teams in the tournament’s 29-year history, and are one of only four teams to reach a final. However, their sole appearance in the showpiece match resulted in defeat to England in 2014.

We take a look back at Canada’s Rugby World Cup story.

RWC debut: 6 April, 1991 v New Zealand at Memorial Ground, Cardiff

RWC appearances: Played 39 – Won 21, Drawn 2, Lost 16 – Points for 947, Points against 636 – Win ratio 54 per cent.

Best finish: Runners-up, 2014

Qualification for RWC 2021: Fifth place at RWC 2017

Most memorable match: Canada took on hosts France at a packed Stade Jean Bouin for a place in the RWC 2014 final. The teams traded first-half penalties before the Canadians stormed into an 18-6 lead with tries from Elissa Alarie and Magali Harvey (pictured) early in the second half. France hit back through Safi N’Diaye and Assa Koita, but a missed conversion from Sandrine Agricole ensured Canada held on to win 18-16.

Iconic moment: Shortly after Alarie had scored in that RWC 2014 semi-final, Canada came under pressure and had to defend an attacking scrum, five metres from their own line. They did so comfortably, and set in motion a potent counter-attack. Magali Harvey received the ball deep inside her own 22, but within seconds had stepped inside Christelle Le Duff and set a course for the try-line. If that wasn’t enough, Harvey gathered her breath and sent the touchline conversion through the posts. It would prove decisive.

Low point: Defeat in the RWC 2014 final would have hurt, but it was not the team’s lowest moment. That came four years previously in England, as neighbours USA pulled off a second-half comeback to beat them 23-20 in the fifth place play-off. It was only the second time that Canada had finished a Rugby World Cup ranked lower than fifth.

Iconic player: Heather Moyse. It is a crowded field, but a return of 14 tries in only 10 Rugby World Cup appearances shades it for the World Rugby Hall of Fame inductee. A double Olympic bobsleigh gold medallist, Moyse used her pace to score seven tries on home soil in 2006 and again at England 2010.

Did you know? Canada have never finished a Rugby World Cup ranked lower than sixth. The Canadians have made the semi-finals on four occasions. They have also contested four fifth-place play-offs, winning two and losing two.

Quote: “I can't stop smiling, it's just a huge rush of adrenalin. I’m not realising it fully now, but I soon will,” – Magali Harvey’s reaction to scoring a try later nominated for IPRA Try of the Year 2014 that earned Canada a first appearance in a RWC final.

Read more: Fiji – South Africa – Wales USA AustraliaFrance 

Last updated: Nov 18, 2020 2:29:45 PM
Rugby World Cup 2021 Draw
Women's Rugby World Cup News Tournament News Women in Rugby mz-advisory women-news-2021 RWC2021
Rugby World Cup 2025 set to break new ground as tournament expands to 16 teams
World Rugby has confirmed that the women’s edition of the Rugby World Cup will expand to 16 teams from 2025 onwards.
Photo of former Japan captain and founder of One Rugby, Toshiaki Hirose
Women's Sevens Men's Rugby World Cup News Women in Rugby RWC2019
One Rugby: A new movement promoting the sport from former Japan captain Toshiaki Hirose
Former Japan captain Toshiaki Hirose and his non-profit One Rugby are behind a new movement to promote all forms of rugby amongst the Japanese people.
New Zealand v Wales - Rugby World Cup 2019: Bronze Final
Olympics Women's Rugby World Cup News Tournament News Women in Rugby
Six of rugby’s best crossover athletes
From Sonny Bill Williams to Christian Wade, we recap six of the best players to have left their mark in rugby while playing to a high level in another sport.
Su Carty
Women's Feature News Women in Rugby women-news-power
Su Carty put scholarship plans on hold to answer ‘Ireland’s Call’
The World Rugby Council and IRFU Committee member returned to work as a psychiatric nurse in Dublin during Ireland’s initial period of lockdown.
Photo of Brazil sevens player Baby Futuro at Rio 2016
Women's Sevens News Preview Women in Rugby Women-news-sevens
Women’s sevens returns in South America as they bid farewell to a star
Women’s rugby sevens returns in Uruguay with the annual South American Sevens, played in Montevideo this weekend. The tournament, which will mark Baby Futuro’s final outing for Brazil, will be streamed live on the SAR’s app.
Rugby World Cup joint host selection process
Women's Sevens Rugby World Cup News Tournament News Women in Rugby mz-advisory rwc-neutral
Key elements approved for future Rugby World Cup awarding
The World Rugby Council has approved a progressive package of recommendations by the Rugby World Cup Board that reflects the organisation’s ambition to select future men’s and women’s Rugby World Cup hosts via a transparent, best-practice host selection process.
Wales Women coaches Warren Abrahams and Rachel Taylor
Women's Rugby World Cup Feature News Tournament News Women in Rugby women-news-2021 Women-news-coach RWC2021
Warren Abrahams and Rachel Taylor “building for the future” in Wales
The incoming Wales head coach and skills coach hope to inspire future generations of female players while creating a stable and competitive environment.
England Women v France Women - Autumn International Series
Women's News Tournament News Women in Rugby women-news-2021 RWC2021
England comeback maintains momentum on road to Rugby World Cup 2021
The Red Roses recorded a seventh successive victory against France, as last week’s Rugby World Cup 2021 Draw added extra spice to Le Crunch at Twickenham.
Madagascar’s Unstoppable, Donatienne Rasoampamonjy
Women's News Women in Rugby Women-news-coach
Meet Donatienne Rasoampamonjy, Madagascar’s tireless Unstoppable
Since Donatienne Rasoampamonjy discovered rugby as a teenager, the game has changed her life. Now she helps other players discover the sport in turn.
Glasgow Warriors v Southern Kings - Guinness Pro14 Round 5
Women's News Tournament News Women in Rugby women-news-regions Women-news-coach
Joy Neville helping to change perceptions as she creates history in Autumn Nations Cup
The former Ireland captain will achieve the latest in a long list of accomplishments when she performs TMO duties in the match between Wales and Georgia in Llanelli.