Twickenham here we come!
Warwick School will be heading to Twickenham to defend their title.
A huge congratulations to the 1st XV for their outstanding 15-10 win over Whitgift School in the Semi-Finals of the Schools Cup at Allianz Park, Saracens.
Warwick was disappointed not to lead at half-time with three clear opportunities from 5m out, and with Captain Tom Fawcett being unfairly judged to have knocked the ball over the line. The second half unfolded to become a very tense match, Whitgift starting the stronger, with a penalty and a try just shortly after half time (0-10). It was now whether Warwick could respond positively and change the momentum in the match.
With the patience and control from the team, it created a penalty in front of the posts, which Fred Lowe calmly converted (3-10). With 20 minutes left, the game started to change slightly, Warwick pressing to get that first try. Zach Shirley managed to get himself on the score sheet after some excellent forward play, with an unconverted try (8-10), to put the game within a score. Warwick managed to keep their composure throughout, maintaining the ball, the gap appeared for inside-centre Kieran Curran to break through the Whitgift defence to score beside the posts, with the try being converted by U16 player Fin Smith (15-10), Warwick were ahead in the game for the first time, now it was whether they could stay composed and react well under the pressure of having to retain the ball and play the clock down.
However Whitgift, in the final moments, pressed hard with a 5m line-out, that was given as not straight. Time was up and it was a historic moment for the team and the school. This is the second final in succession and they follow the footsteps of last year’s team who won the National title (v Bishop’s Wordsworth).
The final will be played at Twickenham on Wednesday 14th March against QEGS Wakefield at 3.40pm, and we cannot wait to have an opportunity to have the ‘blue & white’ support back at Twickenham for the U18 Schools Cup Final.
Warwick U15 team unfortunately won’t be joining their 1st XV peers at Twickenham.
Warwick U15 rugby team were heartbroken after the dramatic ending to their semi-final against Manchester Grammar School. The boys demonstrated some outstanding moments throughout the game. Quick thinking tries by William Mobberley and Max Stanton put Warwick in a commanding position. At half-time it was clear to see that this game had contrasting styles. MGS was more powerful and Warwick wanted a fast, expansive game. Kai Nwangwa added to his outstanding defensive effort with a superb try to put Warwick into a commanding position. Despite finding themselves 21-3 down, MGS showed enormous character to work themselves back into the game. They controlled the possession and thrived off mistakes made by Warwick in the second half. Finding themselves on the wrong side of the referee Warwick found it impossible to get out of their half. Manchester kept on threatening the Warwick defence and unlike previous teams recently played, they masterminded a great recovery finding themselves 22-21 up with one play left. Warwick regained possession and showed the effort and teamwork that this group have acquired from this cup run.
Sadly, time was against Warwick and giving away one last penalty meant Manchester could kick the ball out to end the game. Although this was not the ending Warwick wanted, their coaches Ian Willis and Junior Fatialofa are immensely proud of the development these young gentlemen have made since September. The commitment, team work and honest self-reflections skills they have developed will help this group learn from the experience and come back much stronger in the future.