Pat Kay displays the trophy from the 2017 Singapore Sevens during a visit to the Cowichan Rugby Football Club later that spring. Kay and the Canadian men’s sevens team have qualified for the 2020 Olympics. (Citizen file)

Pat Kay displays the trophy from the 2017 Singapore Sevens during a visit to the Cowichan Rugby Football Club later that spring. Kay and the Canadian men’s sevens team have qualified for the 2020 Olympics. (Citizen file)

Vancouver Island rugby star bound for Tokyo Olympics

Duncan product helps make rugby history again

After six intense years with the Canadian men’s rugby sevens team, Duncan’s Pat Kay helped make history last weekend as Canada qualified for its first Olympic tournament.

Canada went undefeated through the Rugby Americas North Sevens tournament in the Cayman Islands last weekend to claim a berth in the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

“I feel very thankful to be able make history yet again with this group of guys,” said Kay, who was also part of the team that captured Canada’s first-ever World Series win at the 2017 Singapore Sevens. “The men who play alongside me, as well as the support staff past and present, make moments like these even more special. We have gone through quite a lot over the past few years. Some high highs and extreme lows. This is definitely one of those highs that I will remember for the rest of my life.”

A graduate of Cowichan Secondary School who came up through the Cowichan Rugby Football Club, Kay played his first World Series tournament in October 2013, and has now represented Canada in 43 series stops. He’s hoping to hit the 50-tournament mark next season.

Canada defeated Barbados, Mexico and Bermuda in pool play, outscoring their opponents a combined 151-5. The Canadians trounced Guyana 47-5 in the quarterfinals before beating Bermuda again 55. Canada dominated the final against Jamaica as well, winning 40-5 to secure a ticket to Tokyo.

Kay scored tries in both games against Bermuda, and opened the scoring in the final. It felt good for him to return to action after missing a good chunk of the 2018-19 World Rugby Sevens Series.

“I was happy with how the tournament went for me,” he said. “The last few months have been mentally, physically and emotionally draining as I have been battling a bad ankle injury I received in February. Having missed the last four World Series stops — Hong Kong, Singapore, London, Paris — due to this injury, I wasn’t exactly in game shape. Lots of hard work in the gym and physio room put me in a good enough position to be selected for the qualifier tournament. As the tournament went on, I felt stronger and more comfortable with every game.”

Later this month, Canada will travel to the Pan American Games in Peru, which will be the last competition of the season. In September, the squad will be back training, followed by the World Series from December to June, building toward the Olympics next July and August.

“Our goal is to medal at the Olympics,” Kay said. “We have proved that it is possible for us.”

The Canadian women’s sevens team also has a berth in the 2020 Olympics, where they will look to build on their bronze medal from the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.



kevin.rothbauer@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Interior Health reported 79 new cases of COVID-19 and two new death in the region Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (Ben Hohenstatt/Juneau Empire)
79 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths reported in Interior Health

Both of Friday’s deaths were both recorded at long-term care homes

Interior Health reported 91 new COVID-19 cases in the region Jan. 20, 2021 and three additional deaths. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
95 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health, two deaths

Another member of Vernon’s Noric House has passed

Voting is the number one, bare minimum way to have your voice heard by government. (File photo)
Jocelyn’s Jottings: Want to make change? Here are some suggestions

As a citizen you have a voice, you just have to know who to talk to

Amanda Parsons, a registered nurse on staff at the Northwood Care facility, administers a dose of the Moderna vaccine to Ann Hicks, 77, in Halifax on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan-Pool
61 new COVID-19 cases, two more deaths in Interior Health

Twenty-nine people are in hospital, seven of whom are in intensive care

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders sits in on a COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, B.C. minister of health. (Birinder Narang/Twitter)
PHOTOS: Bernie Sanders visits B.C. landmarks through the magic of photo editing

Residents jump on viral trend of photoshopping U.S. senator into images

A 75-year-old aircraft has been languishing in a parking lot on the campus of the University of the Fraser Valley, but will soon be moved to the B.C. Aviation Museum. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Vintage military aircraft moving from Chilliwack to new home at B.C. Aviation Museum

The challenging move to Vancouver Island will be documented by Discovery Channel film crews

A video posted to social media by Chilliwack resident Rob Iezzi shows a teenager getting kicked in the face after being approached by three suspects on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (YouTube/Rob i)
VIDEO: Security cameras capture ‘just one more assault’ near B.C. high school

Third high-school related assault captured by Chilliwack resident’s cameras since beginning of 2021

FILE - In this Feb. 14, 2017, file photo, Oklahoma State Rep. Justin Humphrey prepares to speak at the State Capitol in Oklahoma City. A mythical, ape-like creature that has captured the imagination of adventurers for decades has now become the target of Rep. Justin Humphrey. Humphrey, a Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season, He says issuing a state hunting license and tag could help boost tourism. (Steve Gooch/The Oklahoman via AP, File)
Oklahoma lawmaker proposes ‘Bigfoot’ hunting season

A Republican House member has introduced a bill that would create a Bigfoot hunting season

Economic Development and Official Languages Minister Melanie Joly responds to a question in the House of Commons Monday November 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Federal minister touts need for new B.C. economic development agency

Last December’s federal economic update promised a stimulus package of about $100 billion this year

FILE - In this Nov. 20, 2017, file photo, Larry King attends the 45th International Emmy Awards at the New York Hilton, in New York. Former CNN talk show host King has been hospitalized with COVID-19 for more than a week, the news channel reported Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021. CNN reported the 87-year-old King contracted the coronavirus and was undergoing treatment at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. (Photo by Andy Kropa/Invision/AP, File)
Larry King, broadcasting giant for half-century, dies at 87

King conducted an estimated 50,000 on-air interviews

BC Coroners Service is currently investigating a death at Canoe Cove Marina and Boatyard in North Saanich. (Black Press Media File)
Drowning death in North Saanich likely B.C.’s first in for 2021

Investigation into suspected drowning Monday night continues

Kimberly Proctor, 18, was murdered in 2010. Her family has spent many of the years since pushing for a law in her honour, that they say would help to prevent similar tragedies. (Courtesy of Jo-Anne Landolt)
Proposed law honouring murdered B.C. teen at a standstill, lacks government support

Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions has concerns with involuntary detainment portion of act

Sunnybank in Oliver. (Google Maps)
Sunnybank long-term care in Oliver reports third COVID-19 death

The facility currently has an outbreak with 35 cases attached to it

Most Read