The Ardvreck 7s is always one of the highlights of the prep school rugby circuit up here in Scotland, and having won the Loretto 7s earlier in the term, hopes were high that we could challenge once again. Now we have moved to a two week half term, this event falls right at the end of two weeks of inactivity which is not ideal....added to this, Fergus was unable to play and Rory got injured in the second pool game which left us down to just seven men for the rest of the tournament which was a tough ask to be honest. That said, we were the 2nd best team there and on another day, with everyone back, and not in half term mode, the final result may well have been different.
In the pool, we beat a surprisingly good Strathallan side by four tries(they had beaten Merchiston the day before at 13-a-side rugby) before beating Loretto, which meant we played Belhaven in the 1/4 final whom we comfortably disposed of. This put us through to play Merchiston in the semi final and although we scored the first try, it was one game too far really and a couple of poor decisions, spilling the ball in contact instead of moving it away, handed the initiative to our friends from Colinton and they fully deserved to win and so go through to the Final. They were just that bit more aggressive at the breakdown area and our tired legs, with no reserves waiting to come on, were just a bit slower when it mattered today. Ironically, they met Strathallan, whom we had beaten comfortably in the group, as they had beaten Fettes in the other semi final and it was no surprise that Merchiston won the Final with something to spare.
A driech afternoon up in Crieff, but we played some excellent rugby and kept the ball really well. I suppose we just lacked that sharpness we had before half term, but that should not be a surprise when you think we have had 15 days away from the rugby field! There is much to look forward to over the next few weeks for the 1stXV, starting with the annual tour down to Yorkshire. As ever, we will be warmly looked after by our hosts, the rugby will be tough, but plenty of memories will be made.....I cannot wait!
Well played today, boys.