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Wellington College aiming for 4th title of the season at Sunday’s Oakham 7s

While much of the attention this weekend will be focused on the NatWest Cup semi finals, there is still plenty of 7s action, including the Oakham 7s.

Wellington College enter the Rutland based tournament for the first time as they search for their fourth title in four tournaments this season.

The draw is made up of fifteen sides, split into three groups of five with the top team in each reaching the Cup semi finals along with the best second place team. The remaining two second placed sides are joined by the top two third placed sides for the Plate semi finals.

Wellington’s search for a fourth title of the season begins in Group B, where Stamford will be their biggest rivals. Stamford, located just down the road from Oakham, lost just once this season, in the last 16 of the NatWest Cup to Bromsgrove, and will be a big hurdle for Wellington. Elsewhere in the group Culford, Leicester Grammar School, and Loughborough Grammar School all compete.

Unfortunately neither of last year’s finalists, Champions Bedford Modern and their beaten opponents Stowe, make the trip this year, however the Plate Champions, Denstone College, will be there again this year.

Denstone are in Group C alongside the 2013 Oakham 7s Champions, Bedford, and Bedford will once again be hoping to challenge seriously for the title this year, such is their prowess on hard grounds. They will face the side they beat in that 2013 final, St Joseph’s College, and St Jo’s will be particularly fired up for this one after narrowly missing out on a NatWest Cup semi final, they will be determined to make up for that on the 7s field and have the players to do so.

Also in the group are the Plate champions from that year, Oakham’s biggest local rivals, Uppingham. In a tough group they will be hard pressed to repeat that feat but they are certainly more than capable of challenging, as are other remaining side in the group, The Perse.

That of course leaves Group A, where the hosts Oakham will be hoping to make a very strong case for progressing to the Cup knockout stages. Sherborne look likely to be their toughest challengers, though the likes of Royal Hospital, The Oratory, and KES Birmingham are all vastly capable of making a very strong challenge in this group and putting themselves in the frame for knockout places.

Wellington College certainly look like the team to beat though, while Group C certainly has the look of a group of death, with just about every game there looking like it could go either way and have a massive say in the final outcome.

It ought to be an excellent day of rugby!

Oakham 7s Draw

Group A

Group B

Group C

KES Birmingham

Culford

Bedford

Oakham

Leicester Grammar

Denstone College

Royal Hospital School

Loughborough Grammar

St Joseph’s College

Sherborne

Stamford

The Perse

The Oratory

Wellington College

Uppingham

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