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Mill Bay boys join Canada for World Sevens stops

Matt Percillier and Ciaran Breen on board for stages in Vancouver and Edmonton
Mill Bay’s Ciaran Breen (back row, second from right) and Matt Percillier (back row, fourth from right) join their teammates at the airport in Victoria before leaving for the Vancouver Sevens this weekend. (Liz McDougall photo)

Two Cowichan Valley products will take the field for Canada over the next two weekends as the 2021 World Rugby Sevens Series gets underway with stops in Vancouver and Edmonton.

Ciaran Breen and Matt Percillier have been named to the national team for the first two stages of the tour. Both call Mill Bay home and have played for the Cowichan Rugby Football Club and the University of British Columbia. Breen attended Shawnigan Lake School, however, while Percillier played his high school rugby for Brentwood College.

Percillier is still studying at UBC, while Breen will head to France after the stops in Vancouver and Edmonton, where he plays professionally for Carcassonne in Rugby Pro D2. Percillier’s older brother, Will, also plays professionally in France, for Paris-based Stade Français in the Top 14.

Breen and Percillier are part of a new-look squad for Canada. Only two players from the team that represented Canada in the 2020 Olympics are returning: Phil Berna and Jake Thiel. Team captain Nathan Hirayama has retired since the Olympics, along with Connor Braid, Conor Trainor and Justin Douglas. Duncan product Pat Kay also played for Canada at the Olympics, but is not on the team for the Vancouver and Edmonton tournaments.

CBC Sports will provide broadcast coverage of the HSBC Men’s World Rugby Sevens tournaments in Vancouver (Sept. 18-19) and Edmonton (Sept. 25-26) on CBC TV. All matches will be live streamed via the free CBC Gem streaming service, and the CBC Sports app for iOS and Android devices.