Forsyth a bolter for Canada tour

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Sam Forsyth is no ordinary representative rugby player-in-waiting.
These days, provincial teams are stacked full of lads who can barely grow a beard, have invariably been star members of a First XV, and get selected after being on the selectors’ radar for years.
Forsyth ticks none of those boxes.
He is 28, has never played First XV or representative rugby, and is relatively unknown to most North Otago fans as he is only in his first season with Kurow. Oh, and his beard is more than decent AND he has been primed for higher honours despite playing for Kurow at No8, where he has not played regularly in over a decade.
Forsyth’s name was a surprise (to some) feature of the North Otago preliminary squad for the tour of Canada in July-August, and even the rugged loose forward was not expecting the nod from coach Barry Stevens.
“I was quite surprised but it was nice to get that phone call,” he told the Oamaru Mail.
“I’ve always been keen to play rugby at the next level. I really want to give it a crack this year and we’ll see how it goes.
“I’m very keen to go on the Canadian tour. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime sort of thing.”Forsyth hails from Marlborough, where his parents run a sheep and beef farm. He left Marlborough Boys’ College to do a building apprenticeship before pursuing a farming career, and he is now manager at Berwen Station, a 3600ha sheep and beef farm at Omarama.
Forsyth played rugby for Mackenzie for six years before tiring of the travel and deciding to join a country club a bit closer to home, and Kurow had provided a warm welcome, he said.
He was thrilled to play in the inaugural Jarrad Blackler Memorial game between his new and old clubs to remember the popular Blackler, who also represented both and was killed in a crash last year.
“I played with Jarrad for five years, and it’s a great idea to have a trophy in his memory. You’ve got to do something like that for a guy of his calibre.”Kurow is humming along second in the Citizens Shield table, and Forsyth said the club believed it had the potential to go all the way this season.
He suffered a bad ankle sprain against Valley last weekend but should be back on the field in plenty of time for the semifinals.