A tough, heavy-duty, forwards-dominated game went in favour of Georgia in their international men’s rugby XV against Canada at Calgary Rugby Park today. Ferocious rain and gusting winds coming in from the Rockie Mountains made handling difficult and both sides reverted to frequent up and under kicking to put their opposite defences under pressure.
Georgia, currently ranked 12th in the world and already qualified for the 2019 World Cup by virtue of their two wins and third place in the pool stage of the 2015 World Cup, took the lead within the first ten minutes of the game with a penalty kick, scored by Merab Kvirkashvili. That was all that separated the teams as they ran, with relish, off the pitch to take comfort and shelter inside the changing rooms. Some of the Georgian fans, of which there were many, moved over to the other wet end of the pitch to continue with their noisy chants of Lelo, lelo, Sakartvelo (Try, try Georgia).
Georgia asserted their forward game plan in the second half and pretty much camped out within Canadian quarters. After six minutes a scrum infringement led to another penalty kicked from the left boot of Kvirkashvili to make it 6-0 to the visitors.
Inevitably, the relenting pressure of the Lelos on the Canadian line gave way to a try, scored by and converted by full-back, Kvirkashvili with three minutes to go.
Final score, Canada 0-13 Georgia.
For more photographs of action from the game and the fans in the rain, please visit