BROMSGROVE School have secured a trip to Twickenham after reaching the final of the NatWest Schools U18 Cup for the first time.
Tony Windo’s side edged out Oundle 27-18 in the semi-final at Allianz Park last Saturday courtesy of tries from Harry Ferguson, Henry Walker and Alexander Nisbet.
Captain Luke White also had a day to remember as he landed five kicks to send his side to Twickenham where they will take on holders Dulwich College on Wednesday, March 25.
Bromsgrove’s director of rugby Windo said the result was a testament to the players’ character this season and he believes they have now given themselves a “chance of a lifetime”.
“They are a great bunch of lads, they work exceptionally hard and I have just said to them ‘you get out of life what you put in’ and they have put a lot of effort into this season,” Windo said.
“In the last three rounds of the competition we have gone 7-0 down. We talked about making a good start but it was probably the kiss of death.
“It’s our first Twickenham final and it is testament to those boys’ work ethic that has got us there. It will be the chance of a lifetime. Some of these boys may never go again.
“We are going to encourage them to enjoy the experience. We have got where we are by playing a bit of rugby. “
Oundle played there part in a fast and furious contest and gave Bromsgrove plenty to think about by taking the lead three times in the first half. Tony Warner latched onto a rubber kick from scrum-half George Chatterton and dotted down for an unconverted try but Bromsgrove soon regained their composure.
They used a powerful driving maul to effect to send loosehead prop Ferguson over from close range and took the lead when White added the conversion.
Angus McRae edged Oundle back in front, but their defence was put under cosh again when Bromsgrove shunted them back 20 yards with a series of driving mauls. And the pressure told as hooker Walker was dragged over the try-line, which White converted.
It was their Peterborough-based opponents, though, who snatched a 15-14 lead at half-time as a quickly-taken tapped penalty from Chatterton set up Ben Curry for a try. McRae added the extras .
But Oundle’s supporters were silenced ten minutes into the second half when centre Chase Edwards broke free and linked up with Cooper Bent. He then found inside centre Nisbet who rounded off a thrilling attack.
White confidently knocked over a touchline conversion before the fly half stretched his side’s lead with a more straightforward penalty three minutes later.
Oundle pulled back three points through another McRae penalty when Bromsgrove lost lock Justin Clegg to the sin bin for killing the ball.
But with just two minutes left on the clock, White put the match beyond Oundle’s reach when he kicked his second penalty.