On a day where England thrilled at Twickenham, the school playing fields were equally exciting.
Unfortunately the setting in of the winter weather saw a few games cancelled, but where there was play there was excitement, and some very very close games indeed.
This week’s Focus On fixtures threw up some outstanding games of rugby, and some incredibly close fought matches.
Rugby School’s outstanding unbeaten run this season continues as they beat an excellent Abingdon side. It was close though, oh so close, as the most famous rugby school of all fought hard for a 3-0 win.
3-0, as all our readers will know, is an incredibly rare result in rugby, so it is almost staggering that there was another 3-0 result in our Focus On fixtures. Champions Trophy holders Bedford hosted one of the NatWest Cup favourites, Warwick. Both had tired bodies from huge midweek Cup fixtures, but it was Bedford who managed to hold out for that most hard fought of victories, 3-0.
Things were close at Brighton College too, though with a few more points, as three Marcus Smith penalties secured them a 9-7 victory over Epsom College, who were playing their third game in a week.
Harrow’s fantastic unbeaten season continues, they were made to work hard by Eton College but secured an excellent 21-15 victory away from home.
There was another good win for Wellington College as they beat Hampton 12-0 thanks to two wonderful tries in a game that was dominated by the wet and slippery conditions.
There was a huge game in Croydon as John Fisher hosted Dulwich College. It has been a tough year so far for Dulwich but they were in truly sensational form on Saturday, beating their hosts by an outstanding 46-7 margin.
Millfield secured a very good win against a Blundell’s side who were played their third game of the week. Millfield took full advantage for a 17-5 victory.
Oakham were also playing for the third time in a week, and local rivals Oundle took full advantage at home to secure a fine 14-9 victory over a side who are up there with the best, having reached the Champions Trophy semi finals.
Barnard Castle proved us wrong with a fantastic 17-10 away win over last year’s NatWest Cup finalists, QEGS Wakefield. The North East side have been in stunning form, and could now be a side to keep an eye on for the remainder of the season.
Tonbridge are another side through to the semi finals of the Champions Trophy, and they showed all of that form on Saturday for an excellent 24-7 victory over St Paul’s.
Around the Grounds
There were some fantastic games outside of our Focus On fixtures, NatWest Cup champions Bromsgrove beat Monmouth by an impressive 21-0 victory.
Cheltenham College were on brilliant form too, beating a strong Stowe side 20-3. Bloxham were similarly good, with a 31-0 win over Merchant Taylors’.
Arguably the result of the weekend came in the South West as Clifton College showed off all of their talents for a stunning 80-5 victory over Bryanston, a quite outstanding victory and proof once again of just how good this Clifton side are.
There was another good win for Cranleigh as they secured a 26-3 victory over Hurstpierpoint College. Haileybury were also in flying form with a 39-0 win over King’s Canterbury.
Pocklington picked up a good 34-0 win over Hymers College, while King’s Macclesfield really flexed their muscles for a 40-3 win over Adams Grammar.
Marlborough College and Radley College played out a low scoring but highly exciting 3-3 draw that was as tense as they come.
Whitgift showed their undoubted class once more for a 31-3 victory in what is normally a close game against RGS High Wycombe. Portsmouth Grammar really showed their form with a brilliant 22-0 victory over Seaford College, while St John’s Leatherhead carried on their outstanding form with a 34-11 win over Reed’s.
Sedbergh were once again in dominant form as they beat RGS Lancaster 45-15 in a performance full of skill, muscle, and passion. There was a big result for St Peter’s York, too, they beat RGS Newcastle 17-15.
Kirkham Grammar are again probably Sedbergh’s closest challengers in the region this year. They were once again on the road, this time at Sir Thomas Rich’s, where they recorded yet another fantastic win, 45-3.
Things were closer in West London as St Benedict’s left it late to beat Wimbledon College, 15-14. The away side led 14-12 but in the final play Conor McPartlin landed a fantastic penalty from wide out on the Wimbledon 10 metre line to secure the win in the most dramatic of fashions.
Not far away there was another close game as Tiffin secured a quite brilliant win against Trinity, with the game finishing at 21-17. Trent College, on the other hand, were in utterly dominant form, beating Bradford Grammar 60-0. Caterham, meanwhile, secured a 15-0 win over Sevenoaks, and have now gone 175 minutes without conceding.
There were three huge games under the lights on Friday. At Henley Hawks KCS Wimbledon put in a strong display for a 23-12 win against Shiplake College, while Chislehurst & Sidcup Grammar were also on form, beating Maidstone Grammar 31-7.
At West Park Leeds Woodhouse Grove were once again in absolutely stunning form, beating Grammar School at Leeds 49-7, further cementing their lofty Daily Mail Trophy table position in the process.
You can see photos from the weekend’s action in our Gallery: Saturday 12th November.
If you have any photos, videos, or reports from the weekend’s school rugby, please do send them in via email (firstname.lastname@example.org ), Facebook (www.facebook.com/FifteenRugby ), or via Twitter (@FifteenRugbyXV).
Schools Rugby Fixtures – Saturday 12th November (predictions in bold):
Abingdon 0-3 Rugby
Bedford 3-0 Warwick
Brighton College 9-7 Epsom College
Eton College 15-21 Harrow
Hampton 0-12 Wellington College
John Fisher 7-46 Dulwich College
Millfield 17-5 Blundell’s
Oundle 14-9 Oakham
QEGS Wakefield 10-17 Barnard Castle
St Paul’s 7-24 Tonbridge
Around the Grounds
Austin Friars 19-12 Giggleswick
Bishop’s Stortford College 7-10 The Perse
Bishop Vesey’s GS 16-8 Bablake
Bloxham 31-0 Merchant Taylors’
Brentwood 14-10 Ipswich
Bristol GS 22-23 King’s Worcester
Bromsgrove 21-0 Monmouth
Cheadle Hulme 38-15 Bolton
Cheltenham College 20-3 Stowe
Christ’s Hospital 12-5 Worth
Churcher’s College 6-14 Pangbourne College
Claire’s Court 8-19 Reading Blue Coat
Clifton College 80-5 Bryanston
Colfe’s 17-23 Eltham College
Cranleigh 26-3 Hurstpierpoint College
Dollar Academy 10-21 Merchiston Castle
Duke of York’s RMS 46-7 Ashford
Eastbourne College 12-0 Skinners’
Ellesmere College 20-5 Calday Grange GS
Emanuel 41-3 St Dunstan’s College
Exeter School 19-22 Truro School
Glenalmond 22-12 Loretto
Glyn 24-10 Gunnersbury
Gresham’s 0-10 Norwich
Haileybury 39-0 King’s Canterbury
Hymers College 0-34 Pocklington
KES Bath 15-0 QEH
KES Birmingham 16-12 Princethorpe College
KES Southampton 15-7 Lord Wandsworth College
King’s Bruton 27-5 Monkton Combe
King’s College, Taunton 7-29 Taunton School
King’s Macclesfield 40-3 Adams GS
Kingswood 22-15 Colston’s
London Oratory 14-22 Campion
Loughborough 10-7 Nottingham HS
Magdalen College 26-0 Aylesbury GS
Malvern College 21-10 Dean Close
Marlborough College 3-3 Radley College
Merchant Taylors’, Crosby 21-14 Wilmslow HS
Mill Hill 0-15 Uppingham
Northampton School for Boys 24-10 Leicester GS
Pate’s GS 19-12 KES Stratford
Portsmouth GS 22-0 Seaford College
Prior Park College 0-10 Downside
Ratcliffe College 5-30 Wellingborough
Reed’s 11-34 St John’s Leatherhead
Reigate GS 26-0 Sutton Valence
RGS Guildford 29-17 Judd
RGS High Wycombe 3-31 Whitgift
RGS Lancaster 15-45 Sedbergh
RGS Newcastle 15-17 St Peter’s York
RGS Worcester 31-14 Old Swinford Hospital
Robert Gordon’s College 12-36 Fettes College
Royal Hospital School 3-8 The Leys
Sevenoaks 0-15 Caterham
Sherborne 3-14 Canford
Sir Thomas Rich’s 3-45 Kirkham GS
Stamford 19-11 Berkhamsted
St Ambrose College 7-10 Lymm HS
St Benedict’s 15-14 Wimbledon College
St Columba’s College 26-21 St George’s Harpenden
St Edward’s College v Rydal Penrhos – Cancelled
St Edward’s, Oxford 13-10 The Oratory
St George’s College, Weybridge 5-3 City of London Freemen’s – NatWest Vase
St Peter’s Gloucester 64-0 The Crypt
Stonyhurst College v Ampleforth College – Cancelled
Tiffin 21-17 Trinity
Trent College 60-0 Bradford GS
Wallington CGS 14-5 Latymer Upper
Watford GS 13-5 Haberdashers
Wellington School 8-0 Queen’s College, Taunton
Windsor Boys 0-15 UCS
Wirral GS v Manchester GS – Cancelled
Worksop College 55-21 Ashville College
Wycliffe College 37-21 Sidcot
Wymondham College 22-7 Wisbech GS
Yarm 12-19 Durham
Chislehurst & Sidcup GS 31-7 Maidstone GS
Shiplake College 12-23 KCS Wimbledon
Woodhouse Grove 49-7 Grammar School at Leeds
Still to come:
Cokethorpe v King Henry VIII, Coventry
Cooper’s Coborn v Richard Hale
Dartford GS v Bishop’s Stortford HS
Dauntsey’s v Bishop Wordsworth’s
Felsted v New Hall
Langley v St Joseph’s College