Alouettes speedster Tevaughn Campbell makes World Series sevens debut in New Zealand

CFL speedster Tevaughn Campbell will make his debut for Canada on the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series in New Zealand this weekend.

A rash of injuries at last weekend’s stop in Sydney, Australia, has opened up spots for Campbell, Josiah Morra and Luke Bradley on coach Damian McGrath’s squad.

Injuries to Matt Mullins, Mike Fuailefau, Lucas Hammond, Pat Kay and Phil Berna left Canada with just eight healthy players for its final two games in Sydney. Then captain Harry Jones added to the injury list.

“Rugby gods aren’t smiling on us right now,” McGrath tweeted during the event.

Despite the injuries, Canada went 2-1 on the final day – beating Papua New Guinea and Scotland and losing to Samoa by seven points – en route to a 13th-place finish.

“Never ceased to be amazed by the resilience of these boys,” McGrath said on social media.

Campbell holds the CFL combine’s 40-yard dash record of 4.35 seconds set in 2015. The Toronto native was Canadian university’s 60-metre sprint champion in 2016 and the runner-up in 2015 and 2017.

The six-foot 195-pounder has trained with the sevens squad and played for the developmental Maple Leafs team.

The 24-year-old defensive back split the last three CFL seasons with Calgary, Saskatchewan and Montreal.

Canada, 10th in the overall standings after three events, is in a pool with the No. 7 Americans, No. 98 Kenya and No. 11 Samoa in Hamilton.

Canada Roster

Jared Dougla, Abbotsford RFC, Abbotsford, B.C.; Justin Douglas, Abbotsford RFC, Abbotsford, B.C.; Mike Fuailefau, Castaway Wanderers, Victoria; Nathan Hirayama, unattached, Richmond, B.C.; Harry Jones (capt.), Capilano RFC, North Vancouver; Isaac Kaay, UVIC Vikes, Kamloops, B.C.; Luke McCloskey, Castaway Wanderers, Victoria, B.C.; John Moonlight, James Bay AA, Pickering, Ont.; Jake Thiel, Abbotsford RFC, Abbotsford, B.C.; Tevaughn Campbell, unattached, Toronto; Josiah Morra, Toronto Saracens, Toronto; Luke Bradley, Port Alberni Black Sheep, Port Alberni, B.C.