Canada’s new coach Aaron Zimmerle has announced his first 19-man squad as the Wolverines enter the Firehouse Subs World Cup Qualifiers – Americas tomorrow (Tuesday), when they face Jamaica in DeLand, central Florida.
Zimmerle has held coaching sessions in British Columbia and Ontario in the lead up to arriving in the sunshine state, his men confident coming off the back of a series in over the USA recently to retain the Colonial Cup.
“The boys are all coming together nicely. They are building combinations on the field while off it they’re bonding well,” he said at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. “ We understand how important it is for the side, and for the nation, to perform well and try to reach the World Cup for the first time – but we are under no illusions as to how tough the next five days will be that will determine our fortunes.”
The game is a must-win for the Reggae Warriors after their gutsy performance, especially in defence, but ultimate 20-14 defeat against USA last Saturday.
They will be without injured scrum-half Danny Thomas, putting further tactical pressure on a side that struggled to mount a concerted attacking threat in its first outing.
“We have to lift ourselves for this game,” commented coach and JRL director of rugby, Romeo Monteith. “It’s hard after losing a close one to the USA, however, we want to build on the good things from that game and limit our ball handling errors against Canada to give ourselves the best opportunity to win and bring our wingers and centres more in to play.
“Canada will be difficult to beat, they are a quality side, but so are we; I’m happy with the determination displayed by the Jamaican team so far and we will go out there and try our best to give the people back home something to cheer about.”
The match will be livestreamed at https://www.ginicam.com/rugbyleague/
CANADA 19-MAN SQUAD
Billy Gemmell, Christian Miller, Steve Piatek (Brantford Broncos), Alex Boyd (Capilano Cougars), Tom Dempsey (Easts Tigers), Steve Bouchard (Jamberoo Superoos), Louis Robinson (London Skolars), Rhys Jacks (South Logan Magpies), Ryley Jacks (Sunshine Coast Falcons), Jamie Kelly (Surrey Beavers), Jonathan Cregg, Robin Legault, Matt Wyles (Toronto Centurions), Eddie Bilborough, Antoine Blanc, Enoch Wamalwa (Toronto City Saints), Daniel Blasco-Morris, Rick Schouten, Adam Timler (Valley Warriors)
JAMAICA 19-MAN SQUAD
Alex Brown, Wayne Allen Rettie, (Batley Bulldogs), Omari Caro (Bradford Bulls), Joel Farrell (Dewsbury Rams), Jermaine Pinnock, Renaldo Wade (Duhaney Park Red Sharks), Ryan Grant (GC Foster College), Hamish Barnes, Ross Peltier (Keighley Cougars), Mo Agoro, Richard Barnett, (Hunslet Hawks), Antonio Baker, (Mico University College), Lamont Bryan (Lescure), Joseph Brown (Newcastle), Corey Hanson, (Sheffield Eagles), Nathan Campbell, Marvin Thompson (University Of Technology), Tyrone Rowe (Vauxhall Rugby Club), Brian Hutchinson (unattached)