Despite surprisingly being looked over in favour of NatWest by the RFU as title sponsors for the Schools Cup, the Daily Mail have not lost their enthusiasm for Schoolboy Rugby.
Last week they announced the launch of a new competition, the Daily Mail Trophy.
The trophy is based on a merit league on the Schools Rugby website, a site many of our readers will be familiar with, to enter the trophy schools need to play at least five matches against official Trophy schools during the Michaelmas Term, the trophy is awarded to the side finishing top of the table.
Of the new trophy, Guy Zitter, the managing director of the Daily Mail, said:
â€œWe wereÂ naturally very surprised and disappointed when, after 26 years, the English Rugby Football Schools Union and RFU decided to sell the sponsorship ofÂ the national schools cup to NatWest.Â â€œ
â€œHowever, we are determined to continue our support for schools rugby. This competition is a fantastic opportunity for us to continue our interest in an event which will take in a cross-section of schools plus some very famous rugby-playing schools who did not compete in the national schools cup.â€
The trophy is certainly likely to generate a fair bit of interest both in schools and outside of them, particularly as it is likely to include many of the big names who have not appeared in the Schools Cup in recent years, thus potentially creating a more reliable measure of who is the best.
As ever though, there will still be some uncertainty as given that each school plays a slightly different circuit to the next, creating a true measure of how each school compares is always difficult to achieve.
Certainly it will make for an extra bit of spice and intensity to some of the biggest school 1st XV matches this season, with more than just bragging rights to play for now.
We will be covering the trophy in great detail, and as a little appetiser ahead of the first week of the competition, our first website competition of the 2013/14 season invites you to guess the winners of four of the biggest Daily Mail Trophy games this weekend â€“ with each correct entry winning a Fifteen Rugby t-shirt.
It should all add to what was already an exciting looking 2013/14 Schoolboy Rugby Season!