The Williams Lake Rustlers Rugby Football Club got a big moral and monetary boost with a visit from Team Canada rugby greats Kayla Moleschi and Jake Ilnicki.
While in town for the holidays, the two connected with their old friends and mentors for the annual snow game, lent their support to the rugby club by donating Team Canada jerseys and volunteered their time at the annual Polar Bear Swim, which is hosted by the Williams Lake clubs.
“We want to be here for youth rugby,” Moleschi said at the swim of why the two gave so much of their time to the local club, despite their hectic schedules.
“We want to show the young players that we believe in them as much as they believe in us –– plus, it’s always fun to watch people jump in ice cold water.”
Both Moleschi and Ilnicki have had memorable seasons touring the globe with the women’s and men’s Team Canada rugby clubs.
“It’s a crazy experience. Sometimes I have to pull myself back to take it all in,” Moleschi said.
The duo currently train at the Team Canada rugby facility on Vancouver Island six days a week.
In the New Year Moleschi will travel with her team for games in Brazil, Hong Kong, London and Amsterdam. She is also setting her sights on the 2016 Olympics as rugby will be hosted for the first time during the Games.
For his part, Ilnicki says his first year as a rookie has been “amazing” and he is waiting to hear whether he’ll be playing in France or New Zealand in 2014.