The draw for Sundayâ€™s 2014 Colstonâ€™s School U18 7s had been made, with some very strong teams drawn across every group.
To add a bit of extra spice, the Marches 7s has been cancelled meaning that sides who were set to field teams at both competitions may well field stronger outfits than had been expected at Colstonâ€™s.
Last year Colstonâ€™s reached the final, where the lost out to Bromsgrove School, and the two sides are kept apart this year, with Colstonâ€™s in Group C alongside St Peterâ€™s Gloucester, Kingâ€™s College Taunton, and Welsh giants Witchurch High School.
Bromsgrove are in Group D, where Downside, Prior Park, and New Hall are their competition. Downside won last yearâ€™s Bowl, while Prior Park won the Plate, beating Millfield in the final, so the quality of the group and the difficulty Bromsgrove will face in trying to retain their crown should not be underestimated.
The side that Prior Park beat in that Plate final, Millfield, find themselves in a bit of a â€˜group of deathâ€™ in Group B, where Clifton College, Bicton College, and Kingâ€™s Bruton all lie in wait. Given the quality of Millfield, Clifton and Bictonâ€™s fifteen-a-side seasons, not to mention Bictonâ€™s status as part of the Exeter Chiefs Academy, this should be an incredibly tough group.
Group A should be pretty interesting too. Truro School will be hopeful of progressing and lifting some silverware after their fifteen-a-side hopes in the Schools Cup were dashed by Stowe, while Sherborne will be looking to make up for a slightly below par fifteens season with a crunching start to the sevens season. Cabot Centre and Kingswood make up the rest of the group and should provide some stern opposition.
All in all it should be an exciting tournament, with the destination of the Cup looking highly difficult to predict at this stage. Who do you think will emerge victorious? Let us know via the comment box below or via @FifteenRugbyXV
2014 Colstonâ€™s School U18 7s