Canada will play in a third successive World Rugby U20 Trophy after overcoming USA 67-38 on aggregate to claim the Rugby Americas North regional spot in the 2019 edition in Brazil next month.

They will join top seeds Japan – the side relegated from the World Rugby U20 Championship last year – in Pool A, which also features Kenya and 2008 winners Uruguay.

The other pool features Tonga, Portugal, Hong Kong and hosts Brazil, who will make their debut in the tournament which is being held in São José dos Campos from 9-21 July.


Canada had taken an 11-point advantage into the second leg at Shawnigan Lake School after winning the first match last Tuesday 44-33 and a strong start put them firmly in command of the qualifier.

A powerful scrum laid the platform for Canada with centre Gabe Case and prop Stefan Zuliani crossing for tries in the first half, captain Will Percillier converting both and adding a penalty for a 17-0 lead at half-time.

Two further penalties from Percillier increased that advantage with USA’s only points coming on the hour mark when they capitalised on Canada fly-half Brock Webster being in the sin-bin to score a try through replacement prop Alex Lopeti.

“It is very exciting, it is what we have been working for,” coach Jeff Williams said afterwards. “It is hard to put into words right now, they have worked so hard and they put in a great performance today. I thought we were quite dominant in a lot of different areas and everything the USA threw at us we were able to counter-punch it, so I am very proud and really excited for the guys.

“I didn't think we had a great performance on Tuesday but the growth they have shown in the last two or three days, studying film and recognising they don't have to try everything and keep things really simple. I was really proud of the guys today that they just played a very basic game and it was all centred around our set piece and from there we knew we would create opportunities and we took those opportunities, so I'm really happy for them.”

Photo: Erich Eichhorn