CHRIS CORBEIL EXCITED TO BE ADDED TO CANADA’S LINEUPNews | 5/3/2011 2:01:49 PM | TeamCanadaLacrosse.com
Chris Corbeil, one of the best young defencemen in pro lacrosse, has been added to Canada’s roster for the world indoor championship.
A late opening arose when Ryan Cousins withdrew because of a hand injury, and Corbeil eagerly accepted an invitation from Team Canada general manager Johnny Mouradian to hop on board for Prague, May 21-28.
"My initial reaction was definitely shock,’’ says Corbeil. "I knew the roster had been finalized so I was caught a little off guard when I got the news. I couldn’t be more excited or honoured to be named to the team.’’
Corbeil, who is from Oakville, Ontario, has made rapid progress in his second year with the National Lacrosse League’s Buffalo Bandits. He was fifth in the NLL in loose ball possessions with 121 during the regular season.
"I’ve focused most of my efforts this season on improving my footwork and my off-ball positioning,’’ he says. "It’s been great learning from coaches Darris and Rich Kilgour in Buffalo. They’ve both taught me quite a bit and I feel I’ve really developed as a player under their guidance.’’
This will be his first experience representing Canada and he has never been to Europe. He’ll turn 23 in the Czech Republic on May 22.
"I’m hoping to bring speed and energy to the back end,’’ says the six-foot-three, 195-pound defenceman. "I’ll focus on playing strong defence and look for opportunities to transition the ball up the floor.’’
He was a teammate of Team Canada players Dan Dawson, Josh Sanderson, Sandy Chapman, Kyle Rubisch, Pat Merrill and Brodie Merrill with the Brampton Excelsiors of Ontario’s Major Series Lacrosse last summer. He’d played junior in Brampton with Rubisch and Rory Smith, who is also on Canada’s team for Prague.
It’s been a busy year for Corbeil. Besides his studies at the University of Western Ontario in London, he’s commuted to Bandits games - he’ll be on the floor in HSBC Arena this Saturday for the NLL East final against Toronto - and he also skated as a forward for his school’s hockey team, helping it advance to the national tournament last month.
Head coach Ed Comeau looks forward to having Corbeil in his lineup in Prague.
"Chris brings an excellent attitude and energy to our team,’’ says Comeau. "He is a tough defender who is able to jump into transition as well. We are happy to add Chris to our roster for the world championship.’’
Cousins wishes he could help Canada win a third straight world indoor title.
"Due to a lingering injury I have had in my hand over the last few months, it is unfortunate that I have to withdraw from the Team Canada roster,’’ he said. "I was looking forward to helping Canada secure another gold medal in the tournament but will not be able to help out this time around.
"I wish all the Team Canada players and staff good luck at the tournament as well as safe travels. I once again want to thank Team Canada for giving me this opportunity to represent Canada. It is always an honour to represent your country.’’