Epsom College sealed the first major 7s title of the season on Sunday, winning the Seaford 7s.
Epsom were one of the top 7s side last year, with the Reigate Charity 7s among the titles that they claimed. Since then they went on to a fantastic fifteen-a-side season, and that appears now to have carried through to the short format of the game.
They came through a tricky group before a victory over last year’s champions, Dulwich College, in the semi finals and then a narrow victory over Gordon’s in the final, all with an incredibly young side as a result of U18 Academy League call ups.
Epsom were drawn in Group 3, there were four groups of four teams each, where they beat RGS Worcester, Portsmouth Grammar, and Sevenoaks to top the group. The winners of each group went to the Cup semis, second to the Plate, third to the Shield, and fourth to the Bowl.
Their semi final saw them drawn against the reigning champions, Dulwich College, who had done outstandingly well to top a group containing Emanuel, Bedford and the hosts, Seaford College, who finished second to go to the Plate.
Epsom won a great contest there 17-12, setting up a final against surprise package Gordon’s. Gordon’s had beaten Felsted, Hurstpierpoint College, and New Hall to top Group 4 and secure a Cup semi final against Bishop Wordsworth’s. Bishop Wordsworth’s meanwhile had come through an almighty challenge in Group 2, beating Trinity and the Seaford College 2nd VII before drawing with Berkhamsted. That draw meant the group went down to points difference, leaving Berkhamsted in the Plate and Bishop Wordsworth’s in the Cup.
Gordon’s edged a thrillingly close semi final there, 19-17, and it was to be another close game in the final, a low scoring and tense affair.
In the end Epsom’s quality showed through for a 5-0 victory, one that will surely send them into the rest of this 7s season with huge confidence, but it should give Gordon’s encouragement too, reaching the final, and competing there so hard, in this field was an outstanding effort.
The Plate, meanwhile, was won by Felsted, who beat the hosts Seaford College by a conversion, 7-5. Both had come through their semi finals reasonably comfortably, Felsted beating RGS Worcester 26-5 and Seaford beating Berkhamsted 33-0, however the final was an entirely different affair.
The Shield meanwhile saw former Cup champions Bedford beat Hurstpierpoint College 10-0 to claim that piece of silverware, while Emanuel picked up the Bowl with a 22-19 victory over New Hall in the final.
The final word must go to Epsom College though, who will surely be a threat in each tournament they are in as this 7s season progresses.
Seaford 7s Results:
Epsom College 5-0 Gordon’s
Epsom College 17-12 Dulwich College
Gordon’s 19-17 Bishop Wordsworth’s
Felsted 7-5 Seaford College
Felsted 26-5 RGS Worcester
Seaford College 33-0 Berkhamsted
Bedford 10-0 Hurstpierpoint College
Bedford 28-19 Portsmouth Grammar
Hurstpierpoint College 40-5 Trinity
Emanuel 22-19 New Hall
Emanuel w/o Seaford College 2nd VII
New Hall 33-0 Sevenoaks
Seaford 7s Final Group Standings:
|Pos||Group 1||Group 2||Group 3||Group 4|
|1||Dulwich College||Bishop Wordworth’s||Epsom College||Gordon’s|
|2||Seaford College||Berkhamsted School||RGS Worcester||Felsted|
|3||Bedford||Trinity||Portsmouth Grammar||Hurtpierpoint College|
|4||Emanuel||Seaford College 2nd VII||Sevenoaks||New Hall|
Image via Jason Brown