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Bayside to host BC Rugby finals at South Surrey Athletic Park

All-day event to feature seven division-championship games
Bayside Shark Jamie Beaton dives across the line for a try during a men’s rugby game at South Surrey Athletic Park in February. The park will serve as the host venue for BC Rugby club finals in May. (Don Wright photo)

The main event of the provincial rugby club season will be held on the Semiahmoo Peninsula later this spring.

On Thursday, BC Rugby announced that South Surrey Athletic Park – and the Bayside Sharks rugby club – will host the 2022 BC Rugby Senior Club finals on May 7.

In total, the day will feature seven different championship games from the association’s senior leagues, highlighted by title tilts for both women’s and men’s premier divisions. The busy day of competition, a news release notes, will also be an opportunity for Bayside to show off its long-awaited, newly built clubhouse, which is located on the west side of the park’s two rugby pitches, just south of 20 Avenue.

A beer garden will also be set up for the event.

“Bayside RFC is honoured to be welcoming the top teams and rugby fans from around the province to South Surrey Athletic Park this May 7,” said Bayside president Kevin Whitmarsh. “The Shark Tank has always had two high-quality pitches, and now has the world-class facilities to match. We can’t wait to celebrate the return to championship rugby with all of BC.”

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, both the 2020 and ’21 championships – called “the flagship, season-ending event” of the rugby season in the news release – were cancelled.

“We are delighted to announce the return of BC Rugby’s senior club finals after two years of not being able to truly come together as a community,” said BC Rugby CEO Annabel Kehoe.

“Our thanks to Bayside RFC in supporting us in putting on this great event and cannot wait to welcome everyone for a day of celebration.”

Next year, the club rugby finals will be held at a yet-to-be-determined site on Vancouver Island, which was to be the host region of the 2020 event before it was cancelled.

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