ALTRINCHAM Grammar School pupil William Nicholson conceded it was the small details which cost them at last week’s Rosslyn Park HSBC National Schools Sevens as they came away empty handed.
William and his under-13 side were Altrincham’s sole representatives at the 75th anniversary of the world’s largest schools sevens tournament in south west London.
And while putting on their best show against some of the country’s best junior teams on Monday, they were unable to progress out of their group, failing to pick up a win in three attempts.
Admitting his side had not played to their full potential, William, 13, insists his side will only learn from the experience.
“We played good sevens at times so it shows our players are capable but we couldn’t take advantage of some of the opportunities we had,” said William, who also plays for Bowdon RUFC.
“We have made a lot of silly errors which have cost us a lot. In a tournament like this you’re up against some of the best sides in the country and they take advantage of little mistakes.
“The teams we played had a lot of pace and pressed really high up the pitch and we weren’t deep enough and our hands weren’t good enough.
“When teams were pressing high we needed to dink the ball over the top or go through a gap and get support but a lot of the time there was no support when people were making breaks.
“It’s a really good tournament to play in and we should have got further but we didn’t play well enough.”
Altrincham Grammar School shared the Rosslyn Park pitches with more than 600 teams from across the UK and abroad but still managed to catch the eye of England scrum-half Danny Care.
And Care, who has won 47 caps for England, insists he saw enough from Altrincham Grammar School to notice that they have a few stars in the making.
“It’s an unbelievable tournament – the biggest school’s tournament in the world – so it’s great for the kids from everywhere in the UK to come and there are also international teams as well,” said Care.
“The talent on show was really good, I did a few coaching clinics and the kids were good and keen to learn and listen. Hopefully there were a few stars of tomorrow around. There were definitely a few flyers and star players around the pitches.”
England Rugby Union and former England Sevens player, Danny Care was speaking on behalf of HSBC at the Rosslyn Park HSBC National Schools Sevens where he helped run HSBC coaching clinics for schools during the tournament. For more information visit www.rpns7.co.uk .