In the last academic year, the Sutton Valence 1st XV Rugby team made the incredible achievement of getting to a National Schools Competition Final, that was to be played at Twickenham on Thursday 19th March. Unfortunately, just three days before, as the team was making its final preparations, the game was postponed due to the Coronavirus pandemic. It was hoped that the final would be played at a later date, but this did not happen due to the national lockdown that was to follow.
Over the Half Term break, Mr Grindlay was delighted to receive a letter from England Rugby, and this week the squad received the trophy, recognising the outstanding achievement of being an Under 18 National Schools Vase finalist.
The team got to the final after beating a number of incredibly difficult opponents below: Maidstone Grammar School. 27-18 win; The Skinners’ School. 34-25 win; Chislehurst and Sidcup Grammar School. 41-8 win; The Duke of York’s Royal Military School. 44-3 win; Dartford Grammar School. 44-12 win; Eastbourne College. 36-18 win (Quarter-Final); Wellington School. 22-14 win (Semi-Final).
The team was due to play Newcastle School for Boys in the final.
When current restrictions around the pandemic ease, it is hoped that the players can join each other for a celebratory dinner to mark their achievement.
The whole School community is extremely proud of the boys and it is very fitting to receive such a trophy for this special group of players.
The players consisted of a mixture of last year’s Upper and Lower Sixth students, many of which have now moved onto their next journey: Alfred Goater (Upper Sixth) Charles Galligan (Upper Sixth) Joseph McInerney (2020 H) Ryan Washington (2020 F) Yannick De Moubray (2021 F) Nathan Bispham (2020 M) James Mardon (Upper Sixth) William Hunt (Upper Sixth) Presley Farrance (2020 W) – Vice-Captain Arthur Genders (2020 F) Luke Trigg (2020 W) Jack Lewis (2020 F) Brandon Jackson (2020 M) Benjamin Watkins (2020 C) – Captain Maxwell Halliday (Upper Sixth) Awishma Gurung (2020 M) Dylan Harley (Upper Sixth) Arthur Moffatt (2020 W) Thomas Cunningham (Upper Sixth) Max Savage (2020 C) Jenson McInulty (Lower Sixth) Jasper Benson (Lower Sixth) Tyler Weekes (Lower Sixth) Tom Barton (Lower Sixth) Archie Yorke (Upper Sixth) William Haywood (Upper Sixth)
You can read the letter here.
Below is a picture of the students still at the School in the Upper Sixth, holding the trophy, along with Mr Howell and Mr Dawling.