Beachborough Oakham 7s

Oakham Rugby Sevens Festival

After the Form V and VI boarders formal dinner, Open Morning and the U10’s playing for Buckingham RFC at Welford Road on Saturday evening, the annual Oakham Rugby Sevens competition on Sunday was the final act of a busy weekend. Still despite a little fatigue amongst the boys, they embraced the challenges that lay in front of them as the teams all congregated at Oakham on a blustery day.Beachborough U12’s were placed in Group 1 alongside Stoneygate, Witham Hall and Caldicot. An unfortunate, narrow defeat in their first game against Stoneygate (19-10) despite going two tries in front was frustrating. The same happened in the second match against Witham Hall; Harry W scored a fantastic individual try, running the whole length of the pitch to touch down, to give the team a deserved lead. However, Witham Hall responded with two late tries to snatch a win (14-7) from the jaws of defeat. A very strong Caldicot team ran in 5 unanswered tries against us in the final group game. Therefore, the boys finished in 4th place in the group and advanced to the Plate competition in the afternoon. A sound victory over St Anselm’s (24-10) in the Plate semi final meant the boys progressed through to face Cundall Manor in the final.
Unfortunately, despite a well worked try, the opposition proved to be too good for us and the team succumbed to a 21-7 defeat. Buoyed by a successful time at Welford Road for their club the evening before, Beachborough’s U10 side were placed in Group 3 in their competition with Cundall Manor, St John’s College,St Cedd’s and Laxton. The morning went better than anyone could have anticipated. The boys were quickly into their stride dispatching both Cundall Manor and St John’s College by four tries to nil. The third game saw us play us some fabulous rugby and nearly every boy got on the score sheet as we recorded an emphatic 40-0 win against St Cedd’s. Laxton were more of a test in our final group game but 4 unanswered tries were just reward for another convincing performance. This meant the team finished top of their group having not conceded a single try throughout the morning; a notable achievement in itself. A cup semi final against Witham Hall, a team who had also won their group, awaited us after lunch. The boys knew they would have to take their rugby up another level to try in order to overcome better quality opposition and responded brilliantly. The game was won by half time as great work at the break down from Henry P, Luka D, Charlie L and William G-S allowed Oliver H, Oliver J and Josh D to dart through the gaps that appeared and for Ben E and Angus H to show their electric pace. A final against Spratton Hall was all that separated the boys from winning this prestigious Sevens competition and the team started well claiming an early lead through Ben’s try. Gradually, Spratton’s superior physicality began to take its toll and we had to defend heroically at times. A try in the corner brought Spratton level and roused them. After a disallowed try form Ben after the ball was passed forwards, Spratton took control and scored the winning try with minutes remaining. A great final, in which we more than played our part, and finishing a very creditable runners up to a talented side is something that the boys should be immensely proud of.

This was a hugely positive day all round and the experience of taking part in a high calibre event was extremely valuable. Both teams played some superb rugby and considering how much preparation time we had, all of the boys acquitted themselves fantastically well. My thanks go to all of the parents for their vociferous encouragement of the boys; Beachborough were easily the most well represented school for parental support out of all the ones competing on the day. I would also like to thank Mr Sanders for coaching and leading the U12 team, both on the day itself and in the practice session on the Saturday as well.

Report by Mark Usher