Cudmore back to bolster Canada

Thu, 24 Nov 2016 09:36
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TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Jamie Cudmore will turn out for Canada for Friday's November Tour finale against Samoa.


Cudmore missed the first two games of Canada's tour due to injury but has now been recalled to the starting XV.
Rob Brouwer, Phil Mack, Nick Blevins and Ciaran Hearn also receive starts as head coach Mark Anscombe makes five changes. Brouwer joins Ray Barkwill and Jake Ilnicki in the front row while Brett Beukeboom starts opposite Cudmore at lock.
Evan Olmstead shifts to blindside flank while Heaton again gets the nod at openside with Burnaby's Admir Cejvanovic starting his second straight game at No.8. Mack replaces Gordon McRorie at scrumhalf while Connor Braid again starts at fly-alf. Conor Trainor joins captain DTH van der Merwe on the wings, while Blevins and Hearn form the centre duo. Matt Evans occupies his usual spot at fullback.
Conor Keys is named to the bench again as he hopes to earn his first Test cap for Canada, while Matt Tierney and Andrew Ferguson earn recalls. Canada, ranked 18th in the world, will be looking to finish their tour on a high after losses to Ireland (21-54) and Romania (16-21). In five previous attempts, Canada has never beaten Samoa.
The two sides met last year in Toronto as part of the 2015 Pacific Nations Cup where Samoa stole victory with a last minute try to claim a 21-20 win. Fourteenth ranked Samoa are also winless on their November Tour after a heavy 8-52 defeat to France and a 16-20 loss to Georgia.
Canada: 15 Matt Evans, 14 DTH van der Merwe, 13 Ciaran Hearn, 12 Nick Blevins, 11 Conor Trainor, 10 Connor Braid, 9 Phil Mack, 8 Admir Cejvanovic, 7 Matt Heaton, 6 Evan Olmstead, 5 Brett Beukeboom, 4 Jamie Cudmore, 3 Jake Ilnicki, 2 Ray Barkwill, 1 Rob Brouwer.      
Replacements: 16 Eric Howard, 17 Djustice Sears-Duru, 18 Matt Tierney, 19 Conor Keys, 20 Clay Panga, 21 Andrew Ferguson, 22 Pat Parfrey, 23 Ben Lesage. 

Date: Friday, November 25
Venue: Stade des Alpes, Grenoble
Kick-off: 20.00 (19.00; 11.00 PST; 09.00 WST Saturday, November 26)
Referee: Luke Pearce (England)
Assistant referees: David Wilkinson (Ireland), Gary Conway (Ireland)