Despite fielding an understrength squad, Coleg Sir Gar won the 2014 Urdd National Sevens in Llanelli when they beat Newport HS 31-5 in the final, writes Huw S Thomas.
Because of representative commitments to the weekend international between Wales and France and injuries resulting from Wednesday’s 10-8 Colleges Cup win over Coleg Gwent, Coleg Sir Gar did not expect to win last Thursday.
But braving the cold and damp, the Carmarthenshire boys played with fine purpose and commitment to reclaim the title last won in 2011.
The other local side to do well at the CSG campus was Llandovery College who managed to get to the semi final thanks largely to the play of Harry Randall at fly half but they fell 26-10 to a strong Newport HS side coached by Pontypridd fly half Dai Flanagan.
Newport had been runners up to Millfield at the Llandovery RES 7s the week before and they again fell at the final hurdle at Llanelli.
CSG had a difficult start to the knockout stages scraping home 20-19 in the round of the last 16 against Gower College but then steadily improved under forward skipper Ryan Morgan.
They accounted for Ysgol Cymer 19-5 and close rivals Ysgol Y Strade 28-0 before reserving their best till last.
In their 31-5 win, they outscored Newport HS five tries to one with Player of the Tournament wing Gwion Jones, and the Clement boys - Jacob and Elliot - in fine running form.
The twins–sons of former British Lion Tony Clement - Shaun Pearce and Rhys Davies crossed with Elliot Clement kicking three conversions.
Attention switches to the National Sevens this week (Thursday and Friday) when a large complement of Welsh schools will be trying to win the Blue Riband of the schools sevens world – the Rosslyn Park Open.
Defending champions Sedbergh, brilliant Millfield, ever excellent Wellington College and Hartpury College will be the teams to beat and Wales’s best chance amongst the 26 entries looks to lie with 2012 Open winners Coleg Sir Gar, Newport HS and and Llandovery College.
After Sunday’s final U18 international before the European Championships in mid April, all three will have a full squad available for the first time and could surprise the quartet of English favourites.