The Sirius Academy Year 9 Rugby League team secured an excellent victory in their Carnegie Champion Schools National Cup Quarter-Final match in Surrey against Howard of Effingham school. The team refused to let the distance of the travel combined with their opponents reputation as former National champions in Year 7, shake their confidence and produced a display worthy of progression and give them a shot at been the youngest boys team from the Academy ever to win a National Final. The team will face arch-rivals South Holderness in the Semi-Final, a team who we defeated in the recent Yorkshire Cup Final but lost to in the qualifying stages to the Hull Schools Cup Final, in what promises to be a hard-fought game.
The team began the match looking for big performances to offset the absence of influential captain George Tyson-Wilson, one of their key play-makers in Jordan Richmond and the hard-working Jay Kirkland, all three of whom missed out through injury as well as outside backs Callum Whilsher and Brett Dorley. Despite these absences, key players stood up throughout the game at crucial times to lead an excellent attacking display that created eight tries in total. Kai Thorpes kick-off gave Sirius possession which led to Year 8 student Declan Jackson crashing over for 4-0. Effingham soon levelled for 4-4 before quick thinking from Ryan Brigham followed by Harry Whittles outpacing the defence put Sirius 12-4 up. Effingham hit back before another Year 8 in Mikey Lewis showed great strength to force his way over from close range to give Sirius a 16-10 half-time lead.
With Thorpe kicking well from set positions, and Man of the Match Brad Elliott causing huge problems wide out with strong defence and numerous breaks, Sirius knew they could take control of the game. Thorpe crashed over quickly followed by Elliott who sprinted clear for 24-10. Two quick Effingham tries pulled the game back to 24-18 however Sirius showed their class to see out the game with Kieran Sewell, Tom Jordan, Connor Cape-Melbourne and Jack Arnett leading from the front. In defence the outstanding Josh Atkinson, Luke Moss and Joe Petty stood firm. Atkinson was next over for a deserved try before Lomax showed great skill to cross the line for 32-18. Josh Kirby, Harry Storr and Joseph Coates added fresh legs to the game which Brigham finished off, showing great speed for his 2nd try which Whittles goaled for a 38-18 win.
Special thanks to Rachel Gay for her assistance with the team and to Cosi Basile for travelling with the team, and his support throughout the time away.
Please congratulate the following boys on their excellent success on the pitch and also their attitude and behaviour throughout their time spent away.
Josh Atkinson, Luke Moss (Year 8), Jack Arnett (Year 8), Ryan Brigham, Joe Petty, Mikey Lewis (Year 8), Harry Whittles, Kai Thorpe, Kieran Sewell, Tom Jordan, Brad Elliott, Declan Jackson (Year 8), Josh Lomax, Harry Storr, Connor Cape-Melbourne, Joseph Coates, Josh Kirby, George Tyson-Wilson, Jordan Richmond, Jay Kirkland.