Thunder Tour to New Zealand for Rugby World Cup 2021 – Applications Open

Players wanting to apply for a position on the tour, check out the Player Application Form at the following link. The page also contains more details for players and families. 

Player Application Form and Tour Details

Thunder Rugby New Zealand Tour Media Release

Thunder Rugby, an Indigenous Rugby program on the Canadian West Coast, has announced its intention of touring to New Zealand in September in support of the Canadian Women’s Rugby team at the World Cup. The Rugby World Cup will take place from September 18 to October 16 2021 in Auckland and Whangarei. Canada, ranked 3rd in the world, will play three pool games before the playoff round.

The theme of the tour will be “Cultural Learning Through Sport”. The selected Under 18 athletes (birth years 2003-2005), 12 boys and 12 girls, will be hosted by a Maori community in Panguru, north of Auckland. Clay Panga, former Canadian International and Thunder Coach, who is from the community will act as official host.

The selected athletes will enhance their rugby skills through matches and practice sessions while immersed in Maori culture. The players will also have an opportunity to share West Coast Indigenous culture with their hosts.

John Lyall, Director of Thunder Rugby and of Kwakwaka’wakw descent, had these thoughts on the tour, “Thunder rugby are very excited to take on such a tour.  New Zealand set the standard for Indigenous  rugby and we are excited to learn from the best.  We will use the spirit of Numway’ut, we are all one to guide us on the trip“.

The tentative dates for the two week tour are September 17th to October 2nd. The COVID situation, of course, will be the determining factor on the viability of the tour, and the national and international policies will be closely monitored over the coming months.

Interested athletes are encouraged to apply online at:

Thunder Tour to New Zealand – September 2021

For more information contact John Lyall at

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