Following the success of the Canadian provinces in the Americas Rugby Championships I was expecting to see a number of players in the test side for this game vs Japan. Sadly, the coach has gone for an aged team made of of a lot of not so good European based players. Ander Monro starting at flyhalf instead of the younger and far better Nate Hirayama. Speedy Sean Duke on the bench to give the clumsy Justin Mensah-Coker a start at wing is a massive mistake too. These two choices, to me, are poor. Hirayama and Duke are both certainties to be in the World Cup XV and Canada are not going to have many more chances between now and then. Less than 10 tests to go for them. It is the first match between the two countries since their fantastic drawn match in Bordeaux at the World Cup in 2007. A lot at stake in this as both target better positions in the World Rankings and, of course, they will be in the same pool (Pool A with France, New Zealand and Tonga) in New Zealand 2011. Japan should be favourites, after getting good wins at home last year vs the USA. But, of course, either team can win. Canada 1. Kevin Tkachuk (Glasgow Warriors) 2. Pat Riordan Captain (U Vic Vikes) 3. Dan Pletch (Oakville Crusaders) 4. Josh Jackson (Bordeaux Begles) 5. Tyler Hotson (Plymouth Albion) 6. Chauncey O'Toole (Castaway Wanderers) 7. Adam Kleeberger (Rotherham Titans) 8. Aaron Carpenter (Coventry RFC) 9. Phil Mack (UVic Vikes) 10. Ander Monro (Castaway Wanderers) 11. Justin Mensah-Coker (Plymouth Albion) 12. Bryn Keys (Moseley) 13. Matt Evans (Hartpury College) 14. Ciaran Hearn (Castaway Wanderers) 15. James Pritchard (Bedford RFC) Replacements 16. Mike Pletch (Velox Valhallians) 17. Doug Wooldridge (Cowichan RFC) 18. Jebb Sinclair (Castaway Wanderers 19. Nanyak Dala (Castaway Wanderers) 20. Sean White (James Bay AA) 21. Sean Duke (UVic Vikes) 22. Nathan Hirayama (UVic Vikes) No word yet on the Japanese XV.