St George’s College, Weybridge secured the U18 Schools Bowl on Tuesday afternoon with a magnificent 36-10 victory over Samuel Whitbread Academy at Sixways Stadium.
It was a truly outstanding performance from St George’s, as many of their displays throughout this competition have been. Since the moment the ended up here after the Vase, they have looked like potential winners.
Tuesday at the home of Worcester Warriors was no different, they flew out of the blocks, determined to go one better than the Anthony Watson skippered side of 2011 that lost out in the U18 Vase final.
Within just ten minutes they were 14-0 up as first Aidan Moran crashed over, and then hooker Tom Williams gleefully flopped over at the tail of the maul, with Jamie Boden adding two conversions.
That maul was to prove vital as the game wore on, earing them a 23 minute penalty try and a ton of field position throughout. Prior to that penalty try though, Samuel Whitbread were enjoyed their best spell, but just could not convert that pressure into points, with a couple of penalties sliding wide.
St George’s, on the other hand, were proving ruthlessly clinical. 21-0 up after that penalty try, they then banged over a penalty to send them into the half time break 24-0 to the good.
That ruthless streak carried on into the second half when after just five minutes they were troubling the scorers again. Harlequins U18 hooker Sam Riley, playing prop for his school here, was magnificent, rounding defenders before releasing his winger James Martin to score in the corner for a 31-0 lead.
The young front rower showed his range with a couple of attempted chip kicks before eventually succumbing to a knock, so too did second row Will Hinton, taking a bang on the shoulder as he stopped a dangerous Samuel Whitbread attack as the trailing side started to find their feet.
St George’s were still playing some outstanding stuff though and their fifth try of the game promptly followed when, after a crossfield kick from Boden, Tom Mason gathered and carried over for his first try of the game.
It sent his team 36-0 ahead, a remarkable one but a fitting one, such had been the magnificence of their performance to that point.
Full credit to Samuel Whitbread though, they did not let the scoreline or the disappointment affect them. Carried by their truly outstanding support, they kept plugging away and showed some fantastic quality to score two late tries through substitutes Pierce Holland and Rory Fookes.
In truth, it was St George’s day. The Weybridge side were genuinely outstanding, as they have been since the moment that they lost out to their great rivals Reed’s at the start of the U18 Vase.
Since then in this Bowl competition they have been in stunning form, but this final performance had to be right up there. Against a very big Samuel Whitbread side, they were magnificent, both in nullifying any threats, and in socring some sensationally well worked tries.
U18 Schools Bowl Final: Samuel Whitbread Academy v St George’s College, Weybridge
Samuel Whitbread Academy
15 Jonah Charnock, 14 Alex Harris, 13 Tom Litchfield, 12 Lucas Town, 11 Morgan Dayes, 10 Sean Judge, 9 Charlie Stevens, 1 Lewis Sharp, 2 Charlie Garwood (c), 3 Mitchell Brown, 4 Harry Charter, 5 Kacper Wencek, 6 Curtis Hymus, 7 John Fudge, 8 Charlie Milton.
Replacements: 16 Pierce Holland, 17 Emmet Shiels, 18 Ali Gibbs, 19 Bryce Smith, 20 Archie Simmons, 21 Rory Fookes, 22 Bartek Kryzanski.
St George’s College, Weybridge
15 Harry Martin, 14 Tom Mason, 13 Matt Johnson, 12 Hayden Littlewood, 11 James Martin, 10 Jamie Boden, 9 David Tarnopolski, 1 Ian Richardson, 2 Tom Williams, 3 Sam Riley, 4 Aidan Moran, 5 Will Hilton, 6 Max Minney, 7 Demi Tola-Obembi (c), 8 Connor Cullen.
Replacements: 16 Lorcan Walters, 17 Dylan Morgan, 18 Quinn Munro, 19 Jonny Beaumont, 20 Henry Jones, 21 Joe Willis, 22 Josh Wickers.