Portsmouth Grammar School will host the South Coast 7s tournament on Sunday, a tournament set to be one of the first massive test ahead of the Rosslyn Park HSBC National School 7s at the end of March.
Sixteen teams will be in action, split into four groups of four each, with the top two from each group heading to the Cup quarter finals and the bottom two to the Shield semi finals. Losing Cup quarter finalists will then be in the Plate semi finals, while losing Shield semi finalists will be in the Bowl semi finals.
Last year’s tournament was lost to the weather but it looks as though things are shaping up to see a full schedule of play this year, and given the line up we could all be in for a treat.
As hosts, Portsmouth Grammar School head up Group 1 but it is a fiendish group, including Wimbledon College, who have scooped up trophies in the lower age-groups in recent years, Bryanston, and a Sherborne side that had a brilliant fifteen-a-side season that they will be hoping will translate over to the 7s field.
Group 2 meanwhile has plenty of intrigue, with the two finalists from the first big tournament of the season, the Seaford 7s last weekend, both grouped together. Epsom College won that tournament, beating Gordon’s 5-0 in the final, so their match up here will be one to watch, but so will the other games, with Royal Hospital also in the group alongside Canford, another side that had a huge 15s season that could well translate across.
Group 3 should also be a cracker, it contains one of the giants of 7s, and indeed the school game in general, Millfield. They have picked up silverware in each of the last three editions of this tournament, winning the Shield in 2018, the Cup in 2017, and the Plate in 2016. 2017’s triumph will surely be their aim again but it is a tough pool, with the ever gritty Campion, alongside them as well as Bishop Wordsworth’s and Peter Symonds’ College.
Group 4 contains one of the top head to heads of the group stage with Brighton College and Denstone College lined up together, two fantastic sides. Brighton College have reached the last two finals here, losing out to Millfield in 2017 before beating Wellington College in 2018, they will surely be right in the mix in 2020 too, but right from the off the will be challenged, not just by Denstone College either, but by Churcher’s College and Whitchurch High School, the Welsh side won the Bowl in 2018 and the Shield in 2016.
South Coast 7s Groups – Sunday 2nd February
|Group 1||Group 2||Group 3||Group 4|
|Portsmouth Grammar||Epsom College||Millfield||Brighton College|
|Wimbledon College||Canford||Campion||Denstone College|
|Sherborne||Royal Hospital School||Bishop Wordsworth’s||Churcher’s College|
|Bryanston||Gordon’s||Peter Symonds’ College||Whitchurch HS|