A rugby player from Okotoks is playing with Canada's national men's seven's team in Dubai over the next couple of days.

Thomas Isherwood is originally from England but moved to Okotoks a little over ten years ago and played with the Foothills Lions Rugby Football Club.

He says it's been quite a journey.

"I grew up in England so rugby was in my family, my dad played, my uncle played, grandpa played, my cousins played so it runs in the family," he says. "

Isherwood says when he started Okotoks only had an adult team so he started in Calgary and when he was 13 Foothills started a youth program in the Foothills and from about 11 or 12 he's been laying for the Lions.

He says there's a real family culture in Okotoks, High River and throughout the foothills and having that tight knit community really helps.

"I played with a lot of the same players growing up and won a couple of city championships since we were together and some really phenomenal coaching helped along the way,"

rugbyThomas Isherwood playing for Team Canada (photo supplied by Rugby Canada)

Isherwood says made the team, at least partly on the strength of his showing at the World Cup in Hong Kong.

"I found out my opportunity to solidify a starting spot and took advantage of that and got a lot of playing time, I've been playing rugby since I was three years old so it's just something that I love that comes naturally to me and to be on the world stage representing my country, my family my friends, and when I play I have my heart on my sleeve I love to represent everybody."

Canada is taking on the U.S., Samoa and Japan over the next couple of days and then they travel to Cape Town South Africa for another tournament.

He's looking forward to their opening match against the United States because he knows a lot of the players on their team and bragging rights are always up for grabs.