The Royal Hospital School Junior (U13s) and Senior (U18s) 7s rugby teams both gained places the quarter finals of the prestigious Rosslyn Park National Schools Sevens Tournament as a result of some outstanding performances.
The Rosslyn Park National Schools Sevens is the world’s largest school rugby tournament with some 7,000 boys and girls aged 13 – 18 competing annually. The Junior team competed with 128 schools from across the UK and abroad for a place amongst the last eight teams in the tournament and the Seniors amongst 130 schools in the Festival Tournament open to schools playing just one term of rugby.
Director of Sport, Paul Hardman, took a squad of 10 boys from Years 7 and 8 to Rosslyn Park in Wandsworth, London, on Monday 24 March, and recounted the day:
“The boys travelled with high hopes on the back of a successful run in the Suffolk Schools tournament run by Northampton Saints. They progressed through the group stages winning all their games against King Henry V111 Coventry, Hinchley Wood and Llangynnwyd. This success qualified them for the knockout stages; firstly playing stern opposition, Torquay Grammar, but resulting in a 40-7 win for RHS and the final game of the day against Bristol Grammar. A strong start and committed defence saw RHS power to victory 29-0 with Apakuki Daunakamakama, Toyo Ogunlesi and, Captain, Elliot Chilvers really coming to the fore scoring some wonderfully worked 7`s tries in the process.
This meant that the boys returned to Rosslyn Park on Tuesday 25 March to play on the Grandstand Pitch against a much-fancied Crypt Grammar School from Gloucester. In the end, Crypt ran out winners playing some very strong 7`s but for the RHS boys to achieve a quarter-final place in this prestigious national competition is a special achievement.”
Paul Hardman goes on to report on the Senior boys experience on Wednesday 26 March:
“The Senior Boys gave a fantastic team effort and hearty display to come joint top winners of the group, but on points difference they went through ahead of Bedford Modern to the knock out stage. Conditions deteriorated throughout the day in a group that could have gone three ways but RHS’ gutsy and tenacious defence never gave the other teams a chance to settle.
Highlights of the group stages were hard fought-games against The Kings School Worcester with a score of 35-22 and against Monmouth resulting in 21-7 as well as a comfortable win over St Edwards Oxford resulting in 33-0 to RHS.
A qualification knock-out phase followed against a physical Sir Joseph Williamson’s Mathematical School from Rochester. RHS’ harrying and hustling in defence and decisive in attack resulted in a 20-7 win. Standout performances were seen from, Captain, Dan Smith who was physical in both his attack and defence leading by example and scoring six tries which were matched by Toby Eaton. Other top performers were Alex Rayment, Matt Cantelo, George Butt and Dan Jones”.
Today the Senior boys return to Rosslyn Park as group winners with a place in the quarter finals with 15 other teams. They face stern opposition from Bedford School and Kingswood School.