Seven Ontario Wheelchair Rugby Athletes Headed to World Championship

Wheelchair Rugby Canada announces team for 2018 World Wheelchair Rugby Championship

Wheelchair Rugby Canada is proud to announce the 12 athletes who have been nominated to represent Canada at the 2018 World Wheelchair Rugby Championship, to be held in Sydney, Australia, between August 5th and 10th.

The athletes nominated to the Canadian Wheelchair Rugby Team are as follows:

Cody Caldwell*             Peterborough, ON
Patrice Dagenais*        Embrun, ON
Matt Debly                    Windsor, ON
Trevor Hirschfield*        Parksville, BC
Fabien Lavoie*             Quebec City, QC
Anthony Letourneau     Boisbriand, QC
Travis Murao*             Toronto, ON
Eric Rodrigues           Mississauga, ON
Patrice Simard*            Quebec City, QC
Shayne Smith             Toronto, ON
Branden Troutman       Lloydminster, AB
Mike Whitehead*        Windsor, ON

* Denotes athletes with Paralympic experience

The Canadian team, led by head coach Patrick Côté of Montreal, Que. has seven returning athletes from the team that finished 4th at the 2016 Rio Paralympics, and five athletes who will be competing at their first major international tournament.

“After a solid tournament at the 2018 Canada Cup, we are confident that this group of athletes represents our best combination, and capable of navigating through a very competitive Pool B” said Head Coach Patrick Cote.

Canada, currently ranked 3rd in the world, has competed at every single World Championship event since its inception back in 1995.  The team’s best finish came at the 2002 World Championships, where they bested the USA to take home the gold. This win was captured in the Academy Award-nominated documentary “Murderball”. Canada has also won a pair of silver medals in 1995 and 2014, as well as a pair of bronze medals in 1998 and 2006.

“There won’t be any easy matches in Sydney. They will all be competitive, compelling rugby matches, with a lot on the line. We are, therefore, pleased to have a lot of depth within our team, with a mix of young talent and proven veteran” said Patrick Côté, “We look forward to seeing who we will face in the crossover games.”

In Sydney, Canada will compete in the preliminary round in Pool B alongside USA, Great Britain, France, Colombia and Poland. Reigning Paralympic and world champions Australia, Japan (4), Sweden, New Zealand, Denmark and Ireland will battle in Pool A.

At the conclusion of the preliminary round, all teams will crossover and play in a quarterfinal game.  The winner of each quarter final will advance to the semi finals with the winners advancing to the Championship game.

Team Canada’s schedule is as follows:

August 5          Canada vs. France
August 6          Canada vs. Poland
August 7          Canada vs. Great Britain
August 8          Canada vs. Colombia
August 8          Canada vs. USA
August 9          Crossover Games
August 10        Final Games

About Wheelchair Rugby Canada            
Wheelchair Rugby Canada is the national governing body for the Canadian Heritage Sport of wheelchair rugby. Wheelchair Rugby Canada strives to be a world-leader in wheelchair rugby, a respected advocate for wheelchair athletes and a visionary organization committed to excellence in programs from recruitment to retirement.

For more information, please contact:
Ben Parker-Jones
Communications and Marketing Coordinator
Wheelchair Rugby Canada
Tel: 613.523.0004 Email: