Millfield completed a stunning series of results in shortened formats of the game by winning the Sedbergh 10s this afternoon.
The men with the blue stripe had already collected the silverware for all five of the seven-a-side competitions they had entered, including a quite brilliant victory at the Rosslyn Park National Schools 7s on Friday, but they were not about to settle for that prestigious five out of five, they wanted to add a ten-a-side trophy to the collection in the form of the Sedbergh 10s to make it six from six.
Under the guidance of John â€˜Brimâ€™ Brimacombe, whom we are assured does indeed definitely know best, the Somerset side have been close to unplayable at times. Indeed the only side to have come close to troubling them are Wellington College and yet they had been seen off on both occasions that the sides had met.
Ten-a-side is a different beast though, there is less space than in sevens and the tactics and skill sets are ever so slightly different, so there were no guarantees that that extraordinary 7s form would carry over to Worcester Warriorsâ€™ Sixways Stadium for the Sedbergh 10s.
It did carry over though, and in emphatic style, across seven games over the two days Millfield scored a scarcely believable 206 points, even more impressively; they only conceded thirty.
They saved perhaps their best for the final though, where they faced a talented and powerful RGS High Wycombe side. Many might have expected this one to stay tight, at least early on, however Millfield blew that theory right out of the water to win 24-0, with tries from Aston Lester, Charlie Hall, and a brace from the ever-dazzling Tom Whiteley.
It tells you something of the brilliance of this squad when someone can play at the level that Whiteley showed over two days, and has for two years really, and yet be overshadowed by another man â€“ in this case Millfieldâ€™s captain, Callum Sheedy.
Sheedy rightly collected the Player of the Tournament award, a fitting recognition not just of his play in this tournament but of his contribution to the entire Millfield trophy haul.
Since returning from a nasty knee injury the young pivot has been outstanding, demonstrating single-handedly why communication is so important on a rugby pitch. If you wanted an example of his class, it came in the creation of Whiteleyâ€™s second try. Millfield turned the ball over at the scrum, from which Whiteley fed the ball to his captain. Where many fly halves might look to shift the ball there, Sheedy took it right up to the gainline, committing the entire defence before sending the ball back in for Whiteley to finish. It was astonishingly simple, yet the simple things are what so often evade many of us on a rugby pitch.
Equal to his on field role though has been his off field one, helping to shape this sideâ€™s mindset. Millfield have gone on this extraordinary run not just because of talent, hard work, and good coaching, a major factor has been huge passion and determination.
Underperforming at last yearâ€™s Rosslyn Park hurt them and at every tournament this year there has been a sense that this is a side on a mission to prove a point. It seems to have bound them together; there has been a steely determination before games, a clinical dissection of the opposition during them, and a genuine outpouring of emotion afterwards. Much of this run has been about wanting it more, it is perhaps a clichÃ©, yet it has appeared so true.
Special mention must go to RGS High Wycombe though, they performed excellently as a school through this Sedbergh 10s tournaments. Not only did their A side reach the final, their B side also reached the Plate final. While there may not have been any silverware to bring home, that is an impressive achievement.
Brighton College were the side to deny RGS High Wycombe Bs in that Plate final, while the hosts, Sedbergh, ended up finishing third in the Cup competition, beating Kirkham Grammar School 24-7 in the 3rd/4th place play off.
Once again though, there was nobody who could come close to this extraordinary Millfield side, fortunately though there will be one last chance to see this side in action before they are gone forever â€“ at Twickenham on Saturday 10th May during the London 7s, in a repeat of the Rosslyn Park National Schools 7s Open Final against John Fisher.
Sedbergh 10s Results
Champions â€“ Millfield
Final: Millfield 24-0 RGS High Wycombe
3rd/4th: Sedbergh 24-7 Kirkham Grammar
5th/6th: QEGS Wakefield 17-10 Bristol Grammar
Champions â€“ Brighton College
Final: Brighton College 19-5 RGS High Wycombe B
3rd/4th: Barnard Castle 14-5 Kingâ€™s Macclesfield
5th/6th: St Paulâ€™s 19-14 KES Bath
2014 Sedbergh 10s Day 2 Final Group Standings
RGS High Wycombe
RGS High Wycombe B
2014 Sedbergh 10s Day One Final Group Standings
RGS High Wycombe
RGS High Wycombe B