Montreal rugby community comes together for annual Kelly-Anne Drummond Cup

A special rugby match is taking place on Sunday to honour the legacy of Kelly-Anne Drummond, a former Concordia student and Stingers rugby player who was killed by her boyfriend.

Game at Concordia Stadium on Sunday at 1 p.m., proceeds going to domestic violence charity

Kirsten Trafford, the captain of the Concordia Stingers women's rugby team, said she and the team will give Sunday's game everything they have. (Brianna Thicke/Concordia Stingers)

For the 15th year, a special rugby match is taking place on Sunday to honour the legacy of Kelly-Anne Drummond, a former Concordia student and Stingers rugby player who was killed by her boyfriend.

The Concordia and McGill women's rugby teams will meet at 1 p.m. at Concordia Stadium in the annual Kelly-Anne Drummond Cup.

This year, a member of Concordia's team will also be awarded a scholarship of $1,000 a year for the first time.

The scholarship was created by Kelly-Anne's mother, Doreen Haddad, in partnership with the team.

It was made to support "other women who demonstrate Kelly-Anne's sunny and ambitious attitude," Concordia states on its website.

This year, a scholarship will be given away in honour of Kelly-Anne Drummond's memory. (Submitted by Doreen Haddad)
Drummond was 24 when she was killed by her partner. He was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison. 

The young player's death in October 2004 shook the close-knit Montreal rugby community.

Her mother believes this annual game is the perfect way to honour her daughter.

"Kelly-Anne is no longer here on earth but her legacy lives on at Concordia. This scholarship will allow someone else to continue their education, and make their life a little easier," Haddad said.

Haddad will be at Sunday's match with Kelly-Anne's father, John Drummond, and will present the Kelly-Anne Drummond Cup to the winners at the end of the game. 

"It's everything Kelly-Anne was all about. Even though she is not here with us, I know she is watching over this game and cheering them on" said Haddad.

Jocelyn Barrieau, the head coach of the Stingers, has a personal connection to this game — she used to play against Drummond and took part in the inaugural game while playing rugby for McGill. 

"It was an emotional game. You want to be there for your teammates who were friends with her, and you also want to play to your full potential," Barrieau said. "There were a lot of mixed feelings."

Barrieau prepares her players who never knew Drummond for the game by sharing stories and having Haddad come meet the team to give them their jerseys prior to the game. 

John Drummond, left, and Doreen Haddad, second from right, at the Kelly-Anne Drummond Cup trophy presentation last year. (Submitted by Concordia)

Those moments have allowed Kirsten Trafford, the captain of the Stingers, and her teammates to understand just how important this game is. 

"This is the only game that matters to us," Trafford explained. 

"Our team has this connection to Kelly-Anne and we need to have this cup stay on our home field — that is why this is a very important game for us."

Tickets to Sunday's game are five dollars and money raised will help support Women Aware, programs a community-based centre with the mission to end domestic violence.


Jessica Rusnak is a sports journalist for CBC Daybreak.


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