This week’s top five sees a real mix of teams following an exciting weekend of schools rugby to send us into the half term break.
Two sides from the Festival made our Top 5 School Teams of the Weekend, but there is room for other on what was a busy and high-quality weekend of schools rugby all around.
Top 5 School Teams of the Weekend
Cranleigh were only at their second ever St Joseph’s Festival, however you would not have known it as they entertained throughout the weekend and won the 30th Anniversary tournament of the annual St Joseph’s Festival. It was one of the most dramatic endings to the tournament in its history after they drew 10-10 with Brighton College in the final, winning as the first try scorers. The Surrey school are not only the Festival winners, but in this their centenary year they are also the current holders of the Rosslyn Park HSBC National School 7s title. It is a brilliant double achievement, one of the most special in schools rugby.
Brighton were outstanding throughout the St Joseph’s Festival, and finished up unbeaten having played some truly brilliant rugby. That they drew the final but missed out on lifting the Cup as a result of Cranleigh scoring the first try will leave a bitter taste, but the memory of the rugby they played should raise a smile. In Marcus Smith they had the outstanding player of the tournament, and with the bulk of their side coming from last year’s U16 Rosslyn Park winning side, this is a side with bags of potential still to be released, a scary thought for anyone who is still to play them.
Durham’s start to the season has been a bit up and down at times but they will head into the half term break full of confidence after they secured a stunning win against their old rivals Ampleforth College. A 41-0 victory is a brilliant way to head into the break, and with a busy period post half term coming up, Durham’s confidence should help them to a successful second half of the season.
KES Bath headed into the weekend full of confidence after four wins in a row. However they faced old rivals Bryanston, whom they had not beaten since 2003. Since then Bryanston have produced countless professional players and have been one of the strongest sides around. This year though they have struggled a little and KES Seized the opportunity to claim that first victory since 2003, winning but a comfortable 29-19 margin and securing a place in our Top 5 in the process.
St Peter’s, York
St Peter’s had a stunning season last year, finishing in the top 20 in the Daily Mail Trophy, but this season has started off even better. They headed into Saturday having won all six of their matches so far, including wins over Woodhouse Grove and QEGS Wakefield. Saturday was one of the best of the lot though as they saw off St Ambrose College by a stunning 53-5 margin, a quite brilliant result against last year’s NatWest Vase runners up.