Bedford claimed yet another Oakham 7s title on Sunday as their dominance of this tournament continued.
They had won the title in 2013, 2014, 2016, and 2017, only weather in 2018 and a Wellington College side that would go on to win at Rosslyn Park have stopped them from lifting the Cup at Oakham and none on Sunday could repeat the trick.
That is not to say that they had it all their own way though, far from it. They were in a highly competitive group that included Denstone College, Stamford, and Uppingham. Bedford, Denstone, and Stamford all finished level with two wins and a defeat to their name, with Bedford beating Denstone, Denstone beating Stamford, and Stamford claiming the scalp of Bedford.
Uppingham were the unlucky side to be in such a strong group, but as if further proof of the strength of the group was needed, they went on to win the Bowl competition in style. Bedford meanwhile went through to the Cup on points difference, with Denstone and Stamford heading to the Plate, where Denstone College further underlined the strength of Group E by winning that too. All three trophies ended up in the hands of the Group E sides.
Things were similarly tight in Group C, where Stowe, Campion, and Oakham’s 2nd VII all ended up level with two wins and a defeat, Stowe heading to the Cup from that group and going on to reach the semi finals.
Elsewhere the groups were ‘standard’ in their outcome, with top winning 3/3, second 2/3, third 1/3, and the bottom place side not recording a win. That sent Rugby School, Norwich, St Edward’s Oxford, and hosts Oakham through to the Cup as group winners alongside Stowe and Bedford. King’s Macclesfield and Langley went through to the Cup quarter as best runners up, the misfortune of being in such tight groups costing Denstone and Campion that opportunity.
Once in the knockouts, Bedford were supreme. There quarter final was against Rugby, Group B table toppers who had beaten Bromsgrove, a side that had claimed the title at Solihull in midweek.
Bedford won that impressively, 31-7, setting up a semi final against Norwich, whose quarter final was against their local rivals and fellow Group D side, Langley. For the second time, Norwich beat them, 40-5 this time. Bedford were a different matter though, carrying on their fine quarter final form for a 20-10 victory and a place in yet another Oakham 7s final.
On the other side of the draw it was Group A runners up, King’s Macclesfield, who marched to the final. They had finished behind Oakham in the groups but beat them 19-12 in the quarter finals to set up a semi final against Stowe. Once again 19-12 was the score, sending King’s into the final.
They gave Bedford their toughest game of the knockouts, but ultimately Bedford just had too much and took a 15-7 victory to claim their fifth Oakham 7s title in six tournaments.
There was also a Colts tournament, Bedford reached the semi finals there but it was the Bromsgrove side that beat them in that semi final that went on to lift the Cup, backing up their senior side’s midweek triumph at Solihull.
Oakham 7s Results:
Bedford 15-7 King’s Macclesfield
Bedford 20-10 Norwich
King’s Macclesfield 19-12 Stowe
Bedford 31-7 Rugby
Norwich 40-5 Langley
King’s Macclesfield 19-12 Oakham
Stowe 29-10 St Edward’s, Oxford
Denstone College 40-5 Royal Hospital School
Denstone College 19-7 Bromsgrove
Royal Hospital School 17-7 St Joseph’s College
Denstone College 30-7 Stamford
Bromsgrove 26-12 Trent College
Royal Hospital School 17-15 Oakham 2nd VII
St Joseph’s College 14-12 Campion
Uppingham 22-19 Leicester GS
Uppingham 24-7 Nottingham HS
Leicester GS w/o Loughborough GS
Uppingham 30-7 Oundle
Nottingham HS 12-0 Solihull
Leicester GS 31-7 The Perse
Loughborough GS 20-19 Ipswich
Final Group Standings
|Pos||Group A||Group B||Group C|
|3||Nottingham HS||St Joseph’s College||Oakham 2nd VII|
|Pos||Group D||Group E||Group F|
|1||Norwich||Bedford||St Edward’s, Oxford|
|2||Langley||Denstone College||Royal Hospital School|
|3||Leicester GS||Stamford||Trent College|