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Rugby Canada extends contract of men's national coach Kieran Crowley

TORONTO — Rugby Canada has agreed to a contract extension with men's national team coach Kieran Crowley.

The new deal extends Crowley's contract through August 2017, the anticipated month of Canada's qualifying match for the 2019 Rugby World Cup. The former All Blacks fullback's contract was set to expire in January.

The 54-year-old New Zealander took over the Canadian team in 2008. Canada qualified for the Rugby World Cup in 2011 and 2015 under Crowley's watch, but was eliminated in the pool stage at both tournaments.

Canada finished last in its pool at this year's World Cup, losing all four matches to Ireland, France, Italy and Romania. The Canadian men gave Italy a scare in a 23-18 loss and were edged by Romania 17-15 but were thumped by Ireland (50-7) and France (41-18).

Canada, a Tier 2 rugby nation that does not have a domestic pro league, is currently ranked 19th in the world.

The Canadian Press

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