The U15 Schools Cup semi-finals take place on Sunday afternoon at Saracens’ Allianz Park.
With Northampton School for Boys taking on Rugby at 2 pm and Whitgift facing Wellington College at 3.45pm, we should be in for two spectacular games of rugby, and you can read our preview for each below.
U15 Schools Cup Semi-Finals:
Northampton School for Boys v Rugby – Sunday, 2 pm, Allianz Park
Northampton School for Boys (Midlands B)
Quarter Finals: 10-10 at QEGS Wakefield (first scorers)
Last 16: 29-15 at The Perse
Round 4: 42-7 v Loughborough Grammar
Round 3: 27-17 v Oakham
Round 2: 24-12 at Stamford
Round 1: w/o at Malcolm Arnold
Rugby (Midlands A)
Quarter Finals: 17-7 at Kirkham Grammar
Last 16: 15-5 v Bromsgrove
Round 4: 54-7 at Sandbach
Round 3: 19-15 v Warwick
Round 2: 19-12 at Bishop Vesey’s Grammar
Round 1: 31-5 at John Cleveland
At 2 pm on Sunday Northampton School for Boys and Rugby School kick off the U15 Schools Cup semi-finals in an all-Midlands clash that should be superb.
Northampton School for Boys are used to this sort of territory, their U18s were in the semifinals last year and have reached finals before. This is a school that is supremely well coached and are used to reaching these showpiece games.
Their route here has been tough, Stamford, Oakham Loughborough, The Perse, is a run of games in their Midlands B section that few at any age-group would come through unscathed. Northampton School for Boys did though.
That was just the opening salvo though, for their quarter-final came against one the legends of the Schools Cup, a side that has made getting to semi-finals and finals in this competition almost a matter of sheer routine, QEGS Wakefield. It was an almighty tussle at QEGS, finishing up 10-10, but as first scorers, NSB went through.
Rugby’s route has scarcely been easier, and they too faced a side that has been making an easy habit of semi-finals and finals in the competition, Warwick. Rugby met them in round 3, winning a really tight game 19-15. It was not the only one, Bishop Vesey’s and Bromsgrove also gave them real challenges in their Midlands A section.
Every time though Rugby School, the famous founders of this wonderful game, have answered the questions posed of them, including in a superb quarter-final at Kirkham Grammar School which they won 17-7
Picking these two apart is near impossible, both have been excellent throughout the tournament and both are top class sides who are showing exactly what hard work and good coaching can do. We ought to have a spectacular game of rugby on our hands.
Whitgift v Wellington College – Sunday, 3.45pm, Allianz Park
Whitgift (London & South East B)
Quarter Finals: 32-22 v Millfield
Last 16: 26-7 at Royal Hospital School
Round 4: 19-5 at KCS Wimbledon
Round 3: 54-7 at Langley Park
Round 2: 31-24 at John Fisher
Round 1: Bye
Quarter Finals: 26-19 v Harrow
Last 16: 62-10 at Marling
Round 4: 39-0 v Seaford College
Round 3: 25-7 at Marlborough College
Round 2: 21-3 at Lord Wandsworth College
Round 1: Bye
At 3.45pm on Sunday Allianz Park will play host to an absolutely massive semi-final, as the two most recent champions go head to head.
Whitgift is the reigning U15 Schools Cup champions after their 22-12 defeat of Manchester Grammar last year, while in 2017 it was Wellington College that claimed the title, beating then champions Warwick 25-12.
None of the players from those two sides will be out there on Sunday, though a couple of Whitgift’s might be involved on Saturday in the U18 semi-final against Marlborough College, a sign of just how strong Whitgift’s rugby is across the board this year – truly spectacular achievement.
The spirit and the foundation laid by those previous sides will be there, and for Whitgift the momentum of Saturday could be there too. Dependent on the U18s result that could be a positive or negative, but there is no doubt that the school as a whole will be buoyed by having a side in each semi and that that should give this group a huge boost. They have beaten some outstanding sides on this run, not least a thrilling 32-22 victory over Millfield in the quarterfinals. It is a campaign that began with a massive game too, no easy start here, as they faced local rivals John Fisher and won 31-24.
Wellington College’s progression has generally been a little simpler, heading into the quarterfinals they had conceded just 20 points across the four games, including a stunning 62-10 last 16 victories over Marling. Like Whitgift though, they faced a huge quarterfinal opponent in the form of Harrow and a brilliant game unfolded, Wellington taking it by a score at 26-19.
Like Whitgift too, they can look up to a U18 group that has performed well too – and on this ground. Back in December, their U18s beat Epsom College at Allianz Park to claim the Champions Trophy, which no doubt this young U15 group will be taking inspiration from.
Whichever way you look at it, these are two brilliant sides. They met earlier in the season, Whitgift winning 18-3, but the feeling is that this is a game that really could go either way. It should be great viewing.
Article by: http://www.fifteenrugby.com