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Canada hooker Ray Barkwill signs one-day deal to retire as a Toronto Arrow

TORONTO — Canadian international Ray Barkwill will sign a one-day contract with the Toronto Arrows on Sunday, ensuring he retires from rugby as a member of the Major League Rugby team.
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TORONTO — Canadian international Ray Barkwill will sign a one-day contract with the Toronto Arrows on Sunday, ensuring he retires from rugby as a member of the Major League Rugby team.

Barkwill, 38, announced his retirement from rugby on April 4, citing medical advice in the wake of a brachial plexus injury sustained last November in a Rugby World Cup qualifying tournament in France.

A native of Niagara Falls, Ont., who now makes his home in Victoria, Barkwill was a longtime member of the Ontario Blues, a team which forms the basis of the Arrows.

The Arrows will honour Barkwill ahead of Sunday's home match against the Seattle Seawolves, a team he helped to the MLR title last season.

"Ontario is where I got my start in the sport, and after receiving so much support from the rugby community over the years, it feels natural to come back home to mark the end my playing journey," Barkwill said in a statement.

"I've had the opportunity to play alongside so many members of the Toronto Arrows throughout my playing days, both with the Ontario Blues and the Canadian national team, that I'll always feel like their teammate. To punctuate my playing career by coming back home and retiring as an Arrow is truly special."

Barkwill did not win his first international cap until the age of 32. He exits having played 56 times for Canada, including four games at the 2015 World Cup.

 

Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press




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