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Both of the Army Sevens teams were at the Richmond Summer Social 7s last weekend, with the Women reaching the final and the Men carrying off the Cup title.

The Army Men had won this tournament the last time they had entered it six years ago, and with three wins from their three pool matches they got the perfect start and a springboard all the way to the silverware.

The Royal Navy Stingrays were first up for the red shirts, a 36-0 win was followed by a second win over Nigeria Exiles, 36-12.

Into the knockout stages the Army secured a 14-0 victory over Jamaica and 19-7 victory over Assassins in the quarter and semi-finals respectively, which lead to a showdown with Samurai in the Final.

A large appreciative crowd had gathered in the stand at the Athletic Ground from teams who had competed across the various tournaments throughout the day and they were treated to a thrilling final.

The Army team had gelled well all day, benefiting from their time together over the Super Series rounds and produced another excellent performance to overcome the youthful but very skillful Samurai side to take the title 22-5.

Images © Alligin Photography, Cat Goryn

The Army Women’s team also had an excellent day’s competition. The progress they have made throughout the Super Series is evident and the performances on the pitch on Saturday rewarded the hard work and effort from all players and management with excellent results.

They finished the pool stages with a 100% record with wins over Hammerheads 22-5, Barnes Bears 29-5 and Belsize Park 48-0.  The competition headed straight into semi-finals which saw a 22-12 victory over Tropic 7s leading to a final versus Ramblin Jesters.

The two finalists were very familiar with each other having competed across the four Super Series legs earlier in the summer. The final was an end-to-end thriller, the score changing hands several times before finishing 17-17 at full-time.

Both teams had to find that extra reserve of energy at the end of a long day to face the prospect and pressure of golden point extra time to take the trophy. Immediately the Army were camped deep in the Jesters half and pressing for the all-important score. But with a sucker punch the Jesters went the length of the field for a breakaway try which saw them take the victory.

It was not what the Army Women deserved for their efforts, but the overall day showed the clear benefits and learnings from facing tough opposition regularly in competition.

Both teams will now regroup before heading to Bournemouth over the bank holiday weekend.

Images © Alligin Photography, Cat Goryn

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Words © New Dogs Old Tricks, Header and Featured Images © Alligin Photography, Cat Goryn