14 February 2020
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
LAS VEGAS, NV – Toronto Arrows Director of Rugby Chris Silverthorn has named his starting lineup for Sunday’s Major League Rugby Vegas Weekend match against the Houston SaberCats.
Silverthorn has made just one change to his starting squad that featured in the club’s season-opening win over Austin on Feb. 9, with wing John Sheridan drawing in for Uruguayan international Gaston Mieres. Mieres, along with his fellow countryman Leandro Leivas, was ruled out of Sunday’s contest with a day-to-day injury.
Canadian international fly-half Will Kelly and lock Josh Van Horne have both been named to the bench, and stand to make their club and season debuts, respectively.
“We’re looking to build off last week’s performance,” said Silverthorn. “We were pleased to get the bonus-point win against Austin, but we know we can execute more effectively than we did in the season opener. Each training session is improving our cohesion, and the guys are eager to get right back out on the pitch this Sunday.”
The Arrows (1-0-0) enter the match coming off a five-try 38-10 victory over the Gilgronis in Austin last Sunday. Toronto sits second in the Eastern Conference standings with five points; the NOLA Gold also earned a bonus-point win in the competition’s opening weekend, and possess the conference’s top spot with superior points differential (+33 compared to the Arrows’ +28).
Thirteen full internationals have been named to Toronto’s matchday squad, carrying a combined cap total of 188 matches.
Houston (1-0-0) also won its first game of the season, defeating the Colorado Raptors 21-12 to occupy the second spot in the Western Conference with four points.
“We know Houston can be pretty stingy defensively, and they showed it last weekend against Colorado,” added Silverthorn. “They finished their 2019 season on the right foot, and if they replicate that type of form this Sunday, we’ll need to be sharp if we want to take maximum points. Even though it’s early in the season, the stakes are still high, especially as this fixture counts as one of our home matches. We want to leave it all on the pitch.”
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In our first-ever meeting with Houston last February, we notched five tries in a 44-27 victory over the Cats, including scoring this beauty that started with @fergusonandrew & ended with @spencerjones15 We renew the rivalry with @houstonsabercats this Sunday in Sin City 🎰 #ArrowsUp | #VivaLasRugby
- Kelly stands to make his MLR debut off the bench
- Van Horne stands to make his season debut off the bench
- Eleven squad members are full Canadian internationals: Ciulini (8 caps), du Toit (14 caps), Ferguson (10 caps), Keith (16 caps), Kelly (1 cap), LeSage (16 caps), Mackenzie (21 caps), Moor (14 caps), Quattrin (5 caps), Rumball (35 caps), Sheppard (11 caps)
- One squad member is a full Uruguayan international: Diana (25 caps)
- One squad member is a full Argentinian international: de la Vega (12 caps)
2020 Stats Notes:
- de la Vega is tied for first in the league in lineout takes (7) and tied for second in made tackles (17)
- Malcolm is ranked third in the league in made goals (4) and tied for ninth in points scored (9)
- Moor is tied for third in the league in carries (13) and fourth in the league in running metres (112)
- Sheppard is tied for fifth in the league in carries (12)
- Toronto is tied for second in the league in total tries scored (5) and second in total points scored (38)
Toronto defeated its Texas counterpart twice in 2019, first claiming a 44-27 victory in Houston before putting up a 35-21 triumph in Toronto — the franchise’s first home win — later in the season. Houston ended its 2019 league season as MLR’s seventh-place finisher, finishing its campaign with a 6-10 record.
Saturday’s match will kick off at 2:30 p.m. ET.
Streaming – TSN Direct (TSN.ca) / TSN App
United States of America
Streaming – ESPN+
Streaming – Toronto Arrows Facebook Page (https://www.facebook.com/TorontoArrows/)
The match can also be enjoyed amongst Arrows fans at the club’s Official Watch Party, held at Hemingway’s Restaurant and Bar – Toronto’s home of rugby.
Toronto Arrows Lineup vs. Houston SaberCats
1. Richie Asiata
2. Andrew Quattrin
3. Cole Keith
4. Mike Sheppard
5. Paul Ciulini
6. Tomy de la Vega
7. Lucas Rumball
8. Manuel Diana
9. Jamie Mackenzie
10. Tayler Adams
11. John Sheridan
12. Guiseppe du Toit
13. Ben LeSage
14. Dan Moor (C)
15. Sam Malcolm
16. Steven Ng
17. Pat Lynott
18. Tyler Rowland
19. Josh Van Horne
20. Peter Milazzo
21. Andrew Ferguson
22. Will Kelly
23. Mitch Richardson
Vice President & General Manager: Mark Winokur
Director of Rugby:Chris Silverthorn
Coaches: Aaron Carpenter, Cory Hector, Peter Smith
Performance Analyst: Rodin Lozada
Team Physicians: Dr. Anthony Dixon, Dr. Chris Gallimore, Dr. John Gillis
Athletic Therapist: Perry Fan
Physiotherapist: Rohit Rajput
About Toronto Arrows Rugby Football Club:
The Toronto Arrows Rugby Football Club is Canada’s first professional rugby union team.
Competing in Major League Rugby, the team is equipped to compete against top-tier North American club teams, providing emerging Canadian talent with enhanced and more frequent opportunities to hone their skills at an elite level.
For more information, visit https://torontoarrows.com/
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Header Photo Credit: Norma Salinas