Canadian Rugby Foundation Newsletter – January 2023

In this issue of the Canadian Rugby Foundation Newsletter, “News & Views”, we have updates since the June 2022 Newsletter. Click here to read the complete Newsletter.

The headlines are as follow:

  • Foundation News and Announcements


  •  Funds News


  • Unrestricted Fund News


  • 2022 Awards News


  • Donation Appeal and Contact




As always, we look forward to hearing from you – whether rugby club executives or members, donors, representatives of our 69 Funds, rugby players of all ages and levels, and dedicated or casual rugby union fans – with your questions, suggestions, or other feedback.

And watch for the 2022 Annual Report in March, 2023.


Jeff Chan

Canadian Rugby Foundation Newsletter – June 2022

In this issue of the Canadian Rugby Foundation Newsletter, “News & Views”, we have updates since the 2021 Annual Report was published at the end of February, 2022. Click here to read the complete Newsletter.

The headlines are as follow:

Foundation News

  • Foundation & Rugby Canada Memorandum of Agreement
  • Changes in the Funds’ Disbursement or Grant process
  • Upcoming rugby dates

Continue reading

Rugby Canada and Canadian Rugby Foundation announce new agreement

May 10, 2022 (Langford, BC) – Rugby Canada and the Canadian Rugby Foundation are pleased to announce a new memorandum of agreement which focusses on increased collaboration and co-operation, communication and joint fundraising efforts between the two organizations.

At its core, the agreement recognizes their common purpose to grow and develop the sport across the country for those of all ages, genders, races, cultures, ethnic groups and socio-economic circumstances.

Since 2001, when Rugby Canada’s Board of Directors first endorsed the Foundation, the links between the two organizations have developed significantly. With expanded global competition on the pitch at a high-performance level and increased grassroots participation, the need for financial support for rugby at all levels in Canada has grown in the last two decades.

As such, Rugby Canada recognizes the Foundation’s unique role and acknowledges the working relationship between the two organizations must be more effective than ever. To create an environment in which that can occur, this new agreement has been developed to set out how the organizations will work together while still allowing each to continue important work they do autonomously.

“This agreement is an important step in our collective efforts to find efficiencies and alignment,” said Jamie Levchuk, Interim CEO, Rugby Canada. “The agreement highlights our joint desire to collaborate in communications, fundraising and grant provisions, all of which will be integral in the future efforts of both organizations. Moving forward, we believe that Rugby Canada and the Canadian Rugby Foundation can coordinate to address where gaps exist in our funding as well as which individuals and groups we need to engage to raise required funds.”

“We are excited to have formalized a framework within which our two organizations can support each other,” commented Jeff Chan, Executive Director of the Canadian Rugby Foundation. “Both organizations are committed to working together to ensure we collaborate on important initiatives and activities that require funding, and we look forward to being a part of a new era for Canadian rugby.”

About Rugby Canada
Rugby Canada is the national governing body of the sport of Rugby Union in Canada. They administer and operate Men’s and Women’s Senior and Junior National programs in both rugby 15s and 7s, as well as govern the Club and community game for more than 30,000 registered participants from coast to coast in conjunction with ten Provincial Union members.

Rugby Canada is headquartered at the Al Charron National Training Centre in Langford, BC, residing on the unceded territories of the Coast Salish and Lekwungen/Songhees peoples, with staff also working from Vancouver, Toronto and Ottawa. Rugby Canada business operations, programs and events are delivered nationwide, including the internationally recognized HSBC Canada Sevens annual tournaments.

About the Canadian Rugby Foundation
The Canadian Rugby Foundation is a Canadian Not-for-profit Corporation incorporated under the Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act, registered with the Canada Revenue Agency as a public foundation, registration number 869159186.

The Canadian Rugby Foundation has within its mandate the ability to create endowed funds and award funds to promote and support rugby activities, including but not limited to players, clubs, coaches, officials, and National teams. Among its purposes are to foster, encourage and promote the game of rugby within Canada; and to raise funds or cause the raising of funds through its Fund partners for the promotion of the objects and purposes of the Foundation.

Mike Holmes, Chair –
Jeff Chan, Executive Director –

Oliver Wheeler
Manager, Communications
Gestionnaire des communications

Fletcher’s Patrons Fund

Fletcher’s Fields Limited (FFL) is a share capital corporation incorporated under the Business Corporations Act (Ontario). FFL is a not-for-profit organization within the meaning of paragraph 149(1)(l) of the Income Tax Act (Canada). On its initial incorporation as a letters patent corporation under the Corporations Act (Ontario) in 1970, the objects of FFL were stated in part as follows:

a) To establish, maintain and operate athletic facilities and to promote an interest in athletic games, recreation and sports;

b) To construct and operate grandstands, arenas, playing field, booths, refreshment rooms, food services and other buildings and conveniences whether of a permanent or temporary nature;

c) To arrange or hold matches and competitions of every nature and to offer or grant and contribute towards prizes, awards and distinctions;

d) To buy, sell and deal in all kinds of equipment, apparatus and provisions required by or conveniences for the persons frequenting the Company’s facilities; and

e) To use such facilities and to permit the same or any part thereof to be sued on such terms as the company shall think fit for any purposes, public or private, and in particular for public and other gatherings and meetings, exhibitions, picnics, tournaments and other performances.

On November 23, 2021, the Canadian Rugby Foundation (the Foundation) was pleased to accept a historic donation in the amount of $11.65 million from Fletcher’s Field Limited (FFL), this following the sale of its Fletcher’s Fields rugby facility in Markham Ontario to the City of Markham. The Foundation and FFL have entered into a donation agreement (the “FFL Master Agreement”) effective June 1st, 2021. In addition, the Foundation established from its own Unrestricted Fund a restricted fund to be named the “Fletcher’s Patrons Fund” in the amount of $120,000.

The Fletcher’s Patrons Fund is named for the generous supporters or “Patrons” who in 1995 enabled Fletcher’s Fields to undertake major renovations to the clubhouse and install an electronic scoreboard and a grandstand to accommodate three thousand spectators. Funds for the improvements came by way of an Ontario grant and a major fundraising drive in the rugby community. The fundraising drive involved donors contributing one thousand dollars to Fletcher’s in return for being named a patron and receiving free entry to games. Almost $150,000 was raised from members of the FFL shareholder clubs and other Ontario rugby clubs.

The Fletcher’s Patrons Fund is intended to provide funding from its endowment, and from capital disbursements that continue the objects of FFL. These include:

(a) To encourage and further the game of rugby in Ontario and Canada in accordance with the laws of World Rugby (“WR”);

(b) To actively support rugby players and participants in the Province of Ontario by furnishing equipment, kit, and facilities for the game of rugby; and

(c) To promote all forms of rugby recognized by WR and to arrange matches and rugby competitions and to offer or grant and contribute towards prizes, awards, scholarships and honorariums related to playing rugby in the Province of Ontario.

Fletcher's Fields



Recap: 2021 Canadian University Men’s Rugby Championship

November 28 saw the finale of the 2021 Toronto Arrows Canadian University Men’s Rugby Championship presented by Lougheed Wealth Management – Raymond James (CUMRC). Once again, the UBC Thunderbirds were victorious, winning their third championship in four years, and defeating the defending champions and arch-provincial rivals the University of Victoria Vikes in the Gold medal match 39-7.

This year’s tournament was hosted by Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario from November 24-28.  34 teams competed this year to qualify for the CUMRC through their conference or regional leagues, an increase of 17 percent from the inaugural 2017 tournament. Eight teams from all regions of Canada  won the right to compete at the CUMRC: UBC and UVic from BC, Calgary from the Prairies, Guelph, Queen’s and RMC from Ontario, Concordia from Quebec, and Dalhousie from the Atlantic. Three brand new qualifiers made it to Kingston – RMC, Calgary and Dalhousie.

The results from the twelve matches played over three days aligned closely with the way the teams were initially seeded. All matches were streamed on YouTube and on The Rugby Network:


UBC 66, RMC 0 (

Guelph 34, Calgary 5 (

UVic 72, Dalhousie 0 (

Queen’s 38, Concordia 22 (

Consolation Semi-finals

Concordia 60, RMC 3 (

Calgary 25, Dalhousie 11 (

Championship Semi-finals

UBC 41, Queen’s 20 (

UVic 29, Guelph 22 (

Final Day

7 vs. 8: RMC 43, Dalhousie 7 (

5 vs. 6: Concordia 39, Calgary 17 (

Bronze medal: Queen’s 13, Guelph 5 (

Gold medal: UBC 39, UVic 7 (


Photos from the tournament can be seen here

All game videos on the Queen’s YouTube channel

During the first day of the tournament, 8 players – one from each team – were presented with the Col. W.D.C. Holmes Award recognizing their contributions to the game of rugby off-the-field. Full story.

Following the tournament, the First and Second Team All Stars were announced, with the two finalists, UBC and UVic well represented.


And finally, the University of Calgary Dinos were named as the inaugural winners of the Jeff Chan Spirit of Rugby Team Award. The Dinos were selected by the Toronto Arrows selection panel, the tournament officials, and the CUMRC Board, based on their demonstration of the spirit, values, and culture of the game of rugby including respect for their opponents and the officials, competitiveness, and good sportsmanship over the course of the CUMRC tournament.


The CUMRC Tournament had the generous support of the following sponsors:

Title sponsor: The Toronto Arrows

Presenting sponsor: Lougheed Wealth Management – Raymond James

Sustaining sponsors: The Canadian Rugby Foundation, Langara Fishing Adventures, Pemberton-Holmes, and Michael Holmes.

Host university: Queen’s University

All Stars and Player of the Game sponsor: Pinnacle Scouting

Continuing support: Rugby Canada.

The 2022 CUMRC returns to British Columbia November 30 – December 4, 2022.

2019 Canadian Rugby Club Championship

In 2018 the Canadian Rugby Foundation funded the first year of the Canadian Rugby Club championship and it was a great success bringing together the top 4 men’s club sides from across the country. The event was hosted by the Capilano Rugby Club of North Vancouver and won by the UBCOB Ravens.

In 2019  the first Women’s Canadian Rugby Club Championship was held August 2 to 4, 2019 at Fletcher’s Fields outside of Toronto. The tournament featured four teams hailing from BC, ONT, QB & PEI.

The four participating teams, ranked from one to four respectively, were Capilano RFC, Toronto Saracens RFC, Club de Rugby de Quebec and Charlottetown RFC. Capilano and Club de Rugby de Quebec made their way to the finals with Capilano winning 34-19.

The event was made possible by sponsors and donors including Langara Fishing Lodge, Toronto Arrows, Canadian Rugby Foundation, Gilbert Canada, Aedelhard, Aptoella Rugby Apparel, TIRF, Barb Dinardo, Bill Webb and Mike Holmes. Also thanks to Fletcher’s Fields management.


The match videos, photos and results can be viewed at

Gold medal game photos by Jeff Chan

Bronze medal game photos by Jeff Chan


1. Mikiela Nelson (Capilano)
2. Gillian Boag (Capilano)
3. Ellen Murphy (Charlottetown)
4. Anne- Marie Boulanger Martel (CRQ)
5. Zoriana Workun (Saracens)
6. Nikki Treeantafillou (Charlottetown)
7. Fabiola Forteza (CRQ)
8. Fedelia Omaghan (Saracens)
9. Christina Burnham (Capilano)
10.Anne-Charlotte Beaulieu (CRQ)
11. Anais Gilbert (CRQ)
12. Macy Munson (Capilano)
13. Alysha Corrigan (Charlottetown)
14. Martina Alaimo (Saracens)
15. Kalie MacKinnon (Charlottetown)

Donations to the General Fund help the Canadian Rugby Foundation to support initiatives like the Canadian Rugby Club Championship.

2019 Canadian Men’s University Championship

The Canadian Rugby Foundation were again proud to be part of the Canadian Men’s University Championship, this year along with major sponsors Toronto Arrows, Langara Fishing Lodge and Growth Alchemy Group. Also thanks to individual donors Roger Gay, Chris Lasher and Mike Holmes. This competition is vital for the growth of Canadian rugby and donations to the University Rugby Supporters Fund make projects like this possible.

The UVic Vikes dethroned two time champions UBC Thunderbirds in a tight 21-20 match. The trophy is named after Spence McTavish an iconic name in Canadian University rugby. The photo below shows the University of Victoria team with their 2019 championship banner.

UVic Vikes

For more information on the tournament with results and match videos visit:

The following is a video from the event done by ESIM.

Match Report of Final: UVic vs UBC from Concordia Stingers

The Victoria Vikes won a 21-20 thriller to dethrone the two-time defending champion UBC Thunderbirds in the gold medal game of the Canadian University Men’s Rugby Championship at Concordia Stadium in Montreal on Sunday afternoon.

Earlier in the day the Queen’s Gaels took down the host Concordia Stingers 31-22 to win the bronze medal.The championship game was decided in dramatic fashion. With Victoria out front 21-15 and no time left on the clock, UBC’s Evan Norris ran 12 yards down the right sideline to score in the corner. That made it 21-20.

Max Radcliffe had the unenviable task of taking the corner kick on the last play of the game with the championship on the line. He missed wide left.

Even before it came down to the last seconds, the two teams waged an epic battle that will go down in history as one of the all-time classic university men’s rugby games.

The Thunderbirds came out strong, going up 12-0 early thanks to tries from Dan Archer in the fifth minute and Nick Allen (convert by Jack Scher) in the 15th minute.

The Vikes refused to buckle and came back with two tries of their own to close out the first half. James O’Neill scored both – one at 25 minutes and the second in the 29th minute. Jenner Teufel connect for both converts putting his team up 14-12 heading to the intermission.

UBC regained a 15-14 advantage when Scher delivered a penalty goal in the 49th minute. The lead changed hands again in the 51st minute when Nick Caron scored a try for the Vikes and Teufel made the convert. That set the stage for the wild finish.

Victoria has earned a berth in the championship tournament in each of its three years. The Vikes were silver medallists in the inaugural competition in 2017. Last year they hosted and finished in third place.

This is UBC’s first silver medal after two straight gold medal performances.

Queen’s and Concordia also played an intense game that was decided in the dying minutes.

The Gaels had the edge through much of the early going largely due to the play of scrum half Dylan Young who scored three tries and added three converts. They were up 14-5 at halftime and had a comfortable 31-10 lead with five minutes to play.

Then Concordia made a late charge, getting two tries from Michael Laplaine-Pereira, the last coming in the 59th minute. Stan Blazkowski connected for the first convert, but missed the second. The Stingers were on a roll but ran out of time.

This is Queen’s second appearance at the national championship. In 2018 the Gaels won the silver medal.

Concordia finished fourth for the second year in a row.

Nov. 24 – Medal games

Gold – Victoria 21, UBC 20

Bronze – Queen’s 31, Concordia 22

Nov. 23 – Consolation games

5th place – Brock 26, McGill 14

7th place – Guelph 79, UNB 5

Final Rankings (original seed)

1. Victoria (3)

2. UBC (1)

3. Queen’s (2)

4. Concordia (4)

5. Brock (8)

6. McGill (7)

7. Guelph (5)

8. UNB (6)



1. Guerscham Mukendi – Guelph

2. Michael Laplaine-Pereira – Concordia

3. Bryce Worden – UBC

4. Michael Nwabufo – McGill

5. Benjamin Newhook – Victoria

6. Don Carson – UBC

7. James O’Neill – Victoria

8. Nick Allen – UBC

9. Dylan Young – Queen’s

10. Logan Martin-Feek – Victoria

11. Thomas Goetz – Concordia

12. Aidan McMullan – Concordia

13. Mitchell Santilli – Brock

14. Evan Underwood – Queen’s

15. Colin Lynch – Guelph


1. Stefan Zuliani – Queen’s

2. Connor Sampson – UBC

3. Spencer Cooper – Victoria

4. Frank Carson – UBC

5. Mike Stewart – UNB

6. Zacharias Zorbas – Brock

7. Owain Ruttan – UBC

8. Nicholas Carson – Victoria

9. Fraser Hurst – UBC

10. Steven Commerford – Brock

11. Darien Hewey – Guelph

12. Flynn Heyes – UBC

13. Colm Quirke – Queen’s

14. Victory Eichie – Brock

15. Benjamin Russell – McGill

3rd Annual Canadian University Men’s Rugby Championship Hosted by Concordia University

TORONTO – Following on the heels of the inaugural Canadian University Men’s Rugby Championship (CUMRC) hosted by the University of Guelph in 2017, and the 2018 CUMRC hosted by the University of Victoria, the 2019 Championship will be held November 20-24 in Montreal, hosted by Concordia University.

Concordia Stadium

Concordia University – 2019 Host

Once again voted as the premier Sports Destination in Canada, Montreal is poised to host the Championship – now expanded to 8 teams – in partnership with Concordia, the City of Montreal, Montreal Tourism, the Province of Quebec, and Rugby Quebec, and with the support of Rugby Canada. A full regular season of jockeying for playoff contention and qualifying for entry into the Championship tournament still awaits, but teams in Western Canada (BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan) Ontario, Quebec, and the Maritimes (PEI, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia) have been hot on the recruiting trail, and preparing for their training camps. Will one of those teams successfully knock off two-time Champions UBC? We’ll have to wait and see, but the upcoming season promises to be a scrum-ptious spectacle.

Tournament Qualifiers

University Men’s Rugby is in a unique position in Canada – varsity programs in Ontario (OUA)and Quebec (RSEQ), varsity and club programs in the West including UBC and UVic’s membership in the BC Premier League, and Club sports in the Maritimes – but unlike Women’s Rugby, not an official U SPORTS sport…yet. It was in view of this gap in U SPORTS programming that the Canadian University Men’s Rugby Championship was developed in 2016 and had its inaugural tournament in 2017.

No longer will university men’s rugby seasons end with regional and provincial championships. Rather, all teams will have an opportunity to compete against the best university rugby teams across Canada, play for bragging rights as THE best team annually, and play an important role in the development path for Canada’s national team and the MLR including Canada’s sole member, the Toronto Arrows. Of course, the role played by the Canadian Rugby Foundation which has been the primary seed funder, and by CRF Chairman Mike Holmes who continues as a founding member of the CUMRC Organizing Committee, has been critical to our success and much appreciated.

As the CUMRC continues to growth, the Organizing Committee has also expanded its scope, with support to the first (annual) match between the Canadian University All Stars and the USA Collegiate All Americans in Glendale, CO on July 27 and the return engagement in 2020 back in Canada. Also under early development is a true national championship for University Men’s 7’s, hosted by UBC in conjunction with the Vancouver 7’s tournament in March 2020, with two national semi-final tournaments.

We wish a warm welcome to our 2019 participating teams, families, friends, and rugby fans. Bienvenue et à bientôt à Montréal!

by Jeff Chan

Group Assisted by Canadian Rugby Foundation Raise $80K for Men’s and Women’s Rugby Programs

“I would like to say a heartfelt thank you to these wonderful rugby people who never fail to support Canadian Rugby. Thank you never seems enough but we sincerely mean it.” – Damian McGrath Canada Sevens Head Coach

A group headed by Karl Fix, Rick Bourne, Mark Wyatt and Mike Holmes ran the first LATE LUNCH to raise money for sevens and other Rugby programs assisted by the Canadian Rugby Foundation. Continue reading