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Colleges rugby grows in Birmingham

24 March 2014

  • Sevens Series attracts new entrants
  • Bournville beaten by Aldersley at Veseyans
FE Sevens series

Photo: RFU Archive

Birmingham has two new rugby-playing colleges thanks to the success of this season’s North Midlands FE Sevens Series.

Solihull College and Aston Engineering College have both formed teams which have been established with the support of the RFU’s team of Community Rugby Coaches in the Birmingham area and which have participated in this season’s three-tournament Sevens Series.

Solihull College were one of seven colleges who took part in the third and final event which was successfully staged at Veseyans RFC in Streetly recently, and which continued the expansion of the format over the last three years.

“The FE Sevens has built from a one-off tournament involving three teams three years ago, just one from Birmingham, into a series in 2013/14 involving 11 colleges from the Birmingham area,” said Jon Critchlow, a Community Rugby Coach for Greater Birmingham.

“We have two new rugby teams in Birmingham due to the Sevens Series in Solihull College and Aston Engineering College, both of whom have been supported with extra coaching in the lead-up to the events by RFU Community Rugby Coaches.

“The series has gone from strength to strength, with an even bigger year expected for the 2014/15 season.

“It has given those colleges and sixth form colleges unable to field sides in 15-a-side leagues the chance to play rugby, as well as allowing established rugby-playing institutions the chance to try a different format of rugby union.

“The clubs are buying into the series even more now as they see the benefits of hosting this event.”

At Veseyans the participating colleges were split into two leagues – Performance and Developing – with Bournville College, who won the Performance event, facing Aldersley College in a play-off.

Bournville had won the first two tournaments in the Sevens Series but Aldersley beat them by four tries to one.