Warwick School Rugby Club is through to its third consecutive NatWest Schools Cup u15 final after beating Brighton College 33-20 at Allianz Park and will now play QEGS Wakefield at Twickenham.
Warwick were almost off to the perfect start, fly half Fred Lowe intercepted, and the ball was shipped out wide but the final pass drifted forward. The referee was playing an advantage and Tanner slotted the penalty. This was shortly followed by another Tanner penalty.
The first try of the game saw Brighton centre Alfie Beadle, slice though the Warwick defence to score under the posts to give Brighton College a lead of 7-6.
A third Tanner penalty edged Warwick ahead once again. When the passes started to stick for Warwick they looked threatening. Number eight Oliver Thorneywork looked a constant threat and brought their first try with the final play of the half, giving Warwick a 14-10 lead.
The game was evenly poised, but a seminal moment came early in the second half when Tanner intercepted to score under the posts. This was duly converted to give Warwick a greater lead.
Warwick then scored what looked like a potentially match-winning try when wing Chris David was put away following a brilliant pass from Colia Louis. Brighton responded immediately and several phases later Beadle picked up his second.
Warwick then looked more comfortable, and wing Jacob Weeks scored in the corner, after a long run around the Brighton defence. Brighton scored with the final play, but it was Warwick’s day.
Warwick coach Tom Pierce said: “It’s just amazing, the boys fronted up and we are very proud of them. From day one this season they wanted to emulate their predecessors getting to a Twickenham final, and we have done it. It’s hard every year to get all the way through to the final and it is a massive achievement for any group of players and the coaching staff. It takes a lot of hard work by staff and players over a number of years.”
Warwick now look to another Twickenham final where they will face QEGS Wakefield for the third consecutive year and hope to defend the title they brought home in 2013 and 2014.
Warwick School is in another national cup rugby final too. The u13 team is playing in the final of the School Sport Magazine Cup against Trinity School, Croydon.
Pic credit: Peter O’Grady and Gerry McManus