Tim Zimmer to play in rugby Western Championships

North Peace Secondary’s Tim Zimmer has made the U17 B.C. Rugby Team, something no player from NPSS has ever done.

Zimmer, who just turned 17, was picked to go to Vancouver for an identification camp in July, and eventually was named one of the top 15 players. He traveled to Winnipeg this week to play in the Rugby Canada U18 Western Championships, Aug. 9 to 12.

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What makes this accomplishment event more impressive is that Zimmer has only played rugby for one year. Zimmer applied for the camp at the suggestion of his father, MP Bob Zimmer, who played some rugby growing up, but had no idea he would make the provincial team.

“It’s a big surprise, considering I just played my first year, but I’m very excited about the opportunity,” Zimmer said.

Zimmer said part of the reason he was selected for the team was his size. At 6’1 and 205 pounds, he has great speed for a bigger player, and that allowed them to see Zimmer’s potential and what he can become. Zimmer plays the eight-man position for NPSS, the most important position in rugby, and is an open-side flank for B.C.

Zimmer is a hockey player, and has been focused on becoming better and making strong teams. Now, he’s also known as a rugby player, despite never having the dream of succeeding in the sport.

“I love the physicality and love hitting players. Getting the ball, running down the field and scoring a try is an amazing feeling,” said Zimmer.

Zimmer plans to keep playing the sport with NPSS for the 2019 season. He’s a year away from graduating, but playing rugby at college is becoming a possibility.

For now, he’s focused on the Western Championships. Zimmer’s B.C. U17 team will play a round robin against the B.C. U18s, Team Saskatchewan, Team Manitoba, and two Alberta teams, before the playoff round at the end of the week.

“Our team is solid and has a lot of skilled players. We’re playing against older guys, but we’ll do well and want to win the tournament,” said Zimmer. 

Email sports reporter Dillon Giancola at sports@ahnfsj.ca.

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