Olney RFC has always prided itself in delivering a quality rugby 7s tournament and 2018 proved to be no exception.
Thirty four teams were involved in several competitions that ran alongside the Men’s Open Tournament. There were events for everyone including the Ladies Open and the not quite so serious, but equally competitive Men’s Social.
"It all ran seamlessly and it’s what makes the whole tournament so interesting and enjoyable for those watching. One minute you’re enjoying the spectacle of the ladies of Dobby’s Dodgers take on those of the English Universities Sports 7s, the next it’s over to another pitch to watch Coventry Nighthawks play a Jamaica Development side." So said Tim Smith, a Coventry RFC supporter.
This sentiment was echoed by many of the 2,000 plus spectators and supporters last Saturday.
The honours for the day went to Coventry Nighthawks who won the Sport Punk Men’s Open for the second year. They won the final 47-21 against Ilkley RFC, themselves winners in 2016 and winners of the national event last year.
Coventry by no means had the tournament their own way and were tested by Hammerheads in the semi-final and had to work hard against English Universities Sport 7s in an earlier round.
In the Sport Punk Men’s Open it was Apache Braves that won the plate. The Cawleys’ player of the tournament went to Coventry’s Rob Knox who put in a blistering performance in both the semi-final and final.
In The Cherry Tree Ladies Open, the English Universities Sport 7s student side won a very close game with Hammerhead Ladies which was drawn at full time and finally decided by the first to score in extra time.
High Wycombe Green Dragons were the winners of the Stimpsons Eves Men’s Social tournament with a close score of 24 – 17 against Bedford Athletic Eagles.
The quality of rugby on the pitch was matched by the quality of socialising off the pitch. With family activities, international matches live on the big screen, coupled with the need to keep rehydrated in the glorious weather, the Brakspear Bar and Marquee were in full action all day. The whole day was capped off in style, with the Olney 7s afterparty celebrations continuing late into the night.
Updated 09:21 - 20 Sep 2018 by Kath Middleditch