The draw for the Champions Trophy semi finals was made on Monday lunchtime, with the four remaining sides now knowing what they need to do to get to Allianz Park.
The semi finals will take place on the week commencing the 9th November, most likely on Wednesday 11th November, with the final taking place a fortnight later at Saracens’ Allianz Park.
Bedford, Blundell’s, Epsom College, and Sedbergh were all in the draw.
Bedford had a strong 26-5 victory in the last round over the excellent Sherborne, however they face a tough trip up to Cumbria to face Sedbergh, who beat last year’s Champions Millfield 19-15 in the last round.
This will actually be Sedbergh’s first home game of the competition, having travelled to Millfield, Radley, and Bradford Grammar in the first three rounds, covering nearly 1000 miles. There will therefore be a huge amount of home support as they try to inspire their team to the final, at their first attempt.
It has been an odd route to the semi final for Bedford though, that glorious quarter final has been their only game after their previous two opponents, Farringdon in Round 1 and Cheltenham College in Round 2, both pulled out. Nevertheless, they proved against Sherborne that they deserve their spot.
Epsom College host the other semi final, against Blundell’s. Epsom beat Haileybury by a strong 52-12 margin at the quarter-final stage, and after getting knocked out earlier than they had hoped last year, they are keen to make amends this year and to be in with a shot of lifting the Trophy at Allianz Park.
To do so though they will first need to get past Blundell’s who are so far proving to be the dark horses in this competition, quietly going about their business and picking up wins over the likes of Canford, Monmouth, and then Barnard Castle in the quarter finals. They will not be able to keep it quiet any longer though, not now that they are in the semi finals.
Both games ought to be fascinatingly competitive and should yield a glorious final either way.
Champions Trophy Semi Finals:
Epsom College v Blundell’s
Sedbergh v Bedford
Routes to the Final:
Bedford – QF 26-5 v Sherborne, Rd2 w/o v Cheltenham College, Rd1 w/o v Farringdon Community College.
Blundell’s – QF 26-7 v Barnard Castle, Rd2 31-7 v Monmouth, Rd1 19-11 v Canford.
Epsom College – QF 52-12 v Haileybury, Rd2 24-7 v Eton College, Rd1 w/o v Eastbourne College.
Sedbergh – QF 19-15 v Millfield, Rd2 56-31 v Radley College, Rd1 32-20 v Bradford Grammar.