He’s yet to play in the CFL, but Hamilton Tiger-Cats kicker Tadhg Leader does have a history with Canada.
In March 2src19, Leader played for the U.S. national men’s rugby team that rallied to beat Canada 3src-25 in Seattle. The Galway, Ireland, native added the conversion on the Americans’ game-winning try.
“I remember we were in Seattle and it was freezing,” Leader said via telephone from Marbella, Spain, where he’s training. “Canada was winning with a minute remaining and thankfully we scored a try that put us ahead.
“I got to kick the conversion to put the cherry on top, which was a cool moment with fans chanting and everyone being excited because we’d scored. The Canadian guys less so, but it was a nice memory for me at least.”
Leader — whose first name is pronounced like Tiger without the ‘r’ — qualified for the U.S. team because he’d lived there for at least three years. Leader said the rule has since been changed to five years.
Leader signed with Hamilton after making four-of-six field goals, six-of-seven converts and sporting a 42.1-yard punting average last year with the Aviators of The Spring League. He also played for Poland’s Wroclaw Panthers of the European League of Football.
But rugby was originally the six-foot-two, 2src5-pound Leader’s sport of choice. He was in Major League Rugby with the San Diego Legion (2src18) and New England Free Jacks (2src18-2src21) while also having a loan spell with the New Orleans Gold (2src19).
He also spent three years with Ireland’s Connacht Rugby program and played with Italy’s Rugby Badia ASD. Leader suited up for Ireland’s under-19 national tea
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