BROMSGROVE School’s director of rugby Tony Windo said it was a ‘surreal’ moment to see his side lift the NatWest Schools u18 Cup trophy at Twickenham.
Beck Cutting, Cooper Bent and Blake Edwards got the tries as Bromsgrove came from behind to secure a memorable 30-18 victory over Dulwich College on Wednesday.
Windo said the result left him stunned as Dulwich were strong favourites to claim English school’s premier knock-out competition having won it for the past three years.
But the former Worcester Warriors prop believes the more than 1,000 supporters, including school pupils, parents, staff and Old Bromsgrovians made the difference on the day.
“I was initially elated and then there were just a sense of disbelief that we had actually managed to achieve something of that magnitude,” he said.
“About 1,000 schools started this competition, so to finish at the top of the pile is slightly surreal and one that I am still getting my head around.
“The boys have worked and trained exceptionally hard all year and at the end of the day they got their just rewards for it.
“But the way the school supported it by sending so many pupils, members of staff and old boys was fantastic.
“Speaking to the boys after they said the support was invaluable. There were times around half-time where Dulwich applied a lot of pressure. But to look up and see the boys and girls chanting and waving banners was the lift they needed.”
Windo also admitted director of sport Paul Mullan needed some persuading to allow him to enter the team into the competition.
“I am in charge of the rugby so I have to go through Paul first and this was something I had pester him about,” he said.
“But thankfully Paul agreed to enter us which was massive and Wednesday hopefully made it all worthwhile.”
And Windo said he was hopeful they would be able to defend their title next year, adding: “I think the second year is harder than the first because you only have to look at professional players who have storming first seasons and been fairly innocuous in the second.
“People will probably see them as a threat now and what the boys achieved on Wednesday could be seen as a big statement on the rugby school calender.”
Turn to page 83 for the full match report and pictures.