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An Incredible Week of Rugby

The annual Rosslyn Park 7s – which took place over a week in March - saw St John’s enter into four age groups U13, U14, U16 and U18 boys and girls.

The week started extremely well, with the U13 boys winning all five matches they played on Monday, including a great win of 30 points to 15 vs Dulwich College. The boys played their hearts out, with some star performances from Reiss and Josh, and a highlight of the day being Monte scoring a hat trick against a strong Welsh Side.

Wednesday saw our U16 boys face a tough group including Halliford, Clifton College and Oundle. After a gutsy first victory 12-10 against Halliford, the boys then came up against a classy Clifton and were unable to hold on to their initial lead. However, the next two games went our way and the U16s ended up winning three out of four. Jack, Patrick and Ben were amongst the best for St John’s.

Thursday saw both our U14 and U18 boys’ teams playing their pool matches. The U14 boys won two of their three games and showed some real heart and energy on defence along the way. Jacob scored four tries for the tournament and Archie and Joe were the pick of the defenders.

The U18 team started promisingly, with a big win vs Old Swindon Hospital, before finding narrow losses to both Whitgift 17-26 and Wellington 12-26.  But they ended their tournament with another strong win. The standout performers were Chris, Ed and Peter and it was great to send off the Upper Sixth players, Jack, Jonny and Tom with a win. Team Captain, Jack, commented: “Rosslyn Park is one of those special tournaments and all of the boys played well today. I wish them all the best of luck for next year and thank all who have supported me and the team in my time at St John’s.”

Friday saw our U18 girls back in Rosslyn Park action after a two-year break and wearing the traditional red and white that our founding girls wore in 1991. They played vs Trinity first up to gain a place in the cup with a strong 29-7 win, which included tries from Molly S, Sanna and Bea. The girls’ second game was against last year’s champions, Exeter College. An impressive work rate and genuine belief in the team saw the girls secure two tries and a conversion by Molly W but they narrowly lost 12-15. In the final game, against Llandovery, the girls played their hearts out but lost to a stronger side.

Craig Holland, Head Coach of the girls’ team, said: “The last 11 weeks of training and commitment was well worth the effort. The smiles and energy of the girls made us all proud - can’t wait for next year!”.  Team Captain, Molly S, echoed Craig’s comments when she said: “I know all of the girls enjoyed today and I loved being out there just having fun. We showed that with teamwork and enjoyment anything is possible.”

Director of Rugby, Craig Newby, reflects: “This week has shown how competitive we are as a rugby school, consistently challenging some of the biggest rugby schools in the country. All our players play with enjoyment and pride and some of the results have been outstanding. The U13 boys deserve recognition for their unbeaten day, the U16s for performing so well with very last minute preparation and the girls especially, with only Molly S having played rugby before today, showing the true sense of pride in the St John’s shirt.”