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UPDATED: Powell River Otago Rugby Club match against Port Alberni cancelled

BC Rugby Union would not sanction the game
SCRUM PRACTICES: Otago Rugby Club will not be facing Port Alberni Black Sheep in an exhibition match at Cranberry Field this weekend.

Saturday's rugby match between Powell River Otago Rugby Club and Port Alberni Black Sheep has been cancelled. BC Rugby Union would not sanction the game.

Powell River Otago Rugby Club was set for its first action since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic with an exhibition game against the Black Sheep.

Otago coach Jack Beardmore said the game had been scheduled for November 27 at Cranberry Field.

Beardmore said in addition to the Port Alberni side, Comox Valley Kickers players were also scheduled to come over.

In an interview with the Peak before the cancellation, Beardmore said the two sides would form one team.

“[Comox] couldn’t come with a whole team, and we don’t have a full side either, so we’re going to merge and play against Port Alberni,” said Beardmore. “We’re going to have a combined side against the Black Sheep.”

Beardmore said he is trying to get organized for the team to hopefully start in the spring of 2022 if there is a full league by that time. With coronavirus, it is still up in the air, he added.

Beardmore said the Black Sheep have been a strong rival for Otago for decades. He was ready to coach the combined Otago/Comox side and put the team together when the island players arrived.

Beardmore said he put the Otago players through their paces in preparation for the game at the Thursday night practice this week.

“We had 25 people at training last week,” said Beardmore, “so it’s definitely starting to come together.”