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A look ahead for the Rowing Club

By Braden Maccke

Brockton Oval
The staff at Ruck-Muck are finishing up a relaxing summer and getting ready for the leaves to fall and fresh white lines to be painted on Brockton Oval again. The club’s core is busily at work, getting ready for the Rowing Club’s second crack in as many years at the B.C. Premiership.
On-field training has been going steady since July with new strength and conditioning coach Ben Souness pushing conditioning on his charges well beyond what even @NotJeremeySabell thought possible. Last year’s core players are regular staples at Tuesday and Thursday training, with plenty of new faces also in consistent attendance.
Anyone intending to put in minutes for the Rowers in the fall (all divisions) are welcome to come and run with the boys on Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning at 6:30 p.m. Former and aspiring players are all encouraged to come down and experience coach Ben’s high-energy training sessions.
Jeremy Sabell, head coach and director of rugby operations, told the Ruck Muck he was pleased with the way training has come along at this early stage. “There’s lots of new faces, and recruitment is going very well.”
The club has big boots to fill, with key retirements like those of Phil Hosie and Karl Mudzamba. Gareth Brown and Jonathan Mergui are two stalwarts that are also hanging up their spikes. It’s yet to be determined if the bookends of the front row, Jake Chahwan and Alex Forrest, will be back from Ontario to wear the red and white, but Coach Sabell is optimistic.
Brockton Oval and Brockton Point.
Chris Seyler, hooker and last season’s club MVP, is busily training to reclaim his starting spot. Coach Sabell has no doubt that all positions will be filled by the time league games start in October.
The coaching staff is larger than ever. The addition of Coach Souness seems to have spread the pressure around the each of the coaches. New part-time additions to help Kelly Eglisson with 3rd division and U20 coaching, on a part time basis, include Brett Russell and Danny Smith. Mergui will also likely be back in a coaching role at some point.
All levels will face a high standard of competition this coming season. The Premier and first division squads will play their first league games Oct. 4 at the Oval.
Rowing club back-line veterans Caleb Hansen and Kevin Gurniak both made the travelling roster for the B.C. Bears’ South American tour this summer. The tour to Argentina opened with a lopsided 38-7 Bears’ loss to Buenos Aries, but continued with a 21-20 victory over the Uruguayan national team.
Gurniak and Hansen both relayed tales of an enriching overseas experience, and the Ruck-Muck has no doubt they represented the Rowing Club well.


Sept. 06 – Mainland Cup:
1:30 p.m. 1sts vs. Seattle (Brockton Oval)
2:45 p.m. Premiers vs. Seattle (Brockton Oval)
Sept. 12 – Fight Night VI at the Hellenic Community Centre of Vancouver, 4500 Arbutus Street. Get your tickets here.

Sept. 13 – Bye week
Sept. 20 – Mainland Cup:

1:30 p.m. 1sts @ Burnaby (Burnaby Lake)
2:45 p.m. Premiers @ Burnaby (Burnaby Lake)
Sept. 21 – Golf tournament at Langara Golf Course. Tee-off time is 10 a.m. Get your tickets here.
Sept. 27 – Oktoberfest – details forthcoming.


Oct. 04 – Rowers vs. Burnaby Lake Rugby Club
Oct. 11 – Bye week
Oct. 18 – Rowers @ UBC (Wolfson Fields)
Oct. 25 – Rowers vs. UBCOB Ravens RFC
Nov. 01 – Rowers vs. James Bay AA
Nov. 08 – Rowers @ Castaway Wanderers RFC (Windsor Park)
Nov. 15 – Rowers vs. Capilano RFC
Nov. 22 – Rowers @ UVic (Wallace Field)

Jan. 31 – Bye Week
Feb. 07 – Rowers @ UBCOB Ravens RFC (Jericho Park)
Feb. 14 – Bye Week
Feb. 21 – Rowers vs. Castaway Wanderers RFC
Feb. 28 – Rowers @ Capilano RFC (Klahanie Park)
Mar. 07 – Bye Week
Mar. 14 – Rowers vs. UVic
Mar. 21 – Rowers @ Seattle (Exhibition)
Mar. 28 – Rowers vs. UBC
Apr. 04 – Bye Week
Apr. 11 – Rowers @ Burnaby (Burnaby Lake)
Apr. 18 – Rowers @ James Bay AA (MacDonald Park)

Stay tuned to Ruck-Muck for all the latest new and post-match reports.

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