Rugby

When engaged in the art rugby, the vanquishing of thine enemy can be the warrior's only concern. This is the first and cardinal rule of our game, of our code, of our very brotherhood. Suppress all human emotion and compassion; destroy whoever stands in thy way. This truth lies at the heart of the art of your combat, be it the power of the number eight or the nimble jink of the fly half. Once it is mastered. Thou shall fear no one. Though the devil himself may bar thy way.

Rugby sevens is a game of tactics, patience, speed, skill and above all flair. Thus being the show off I am I decided the Old Brightonians 1st VII RFC should demonstrate all these admirable virtues and many more besides at the annual East Grinstead Sunshine sevens - Sussex’s premier Sevens tournament.

All the efforts in planning and training were put under threat by doubts over our departure day due to the strike by South African Airways. A phone call at 11am on the morning of departure gave us the go ahead. The tour was up and running. However, another obstacle awaited us is Johannesburg in the form of passport control, which took two and half hours to clear. This put enormous pressure on catching our connecting flight to Cape Town and only the pleadings of an old man and the size of the party allowed us to win the day and board the plane half an hour late.

Honouring Peter Rumney (Ha. 1937-39), the OB RFC took to the field of battle, with a good mix of ages, on the 27th December against a youthful Hove XV. A huge thank you to all players and supporters who came out to fight the good fight and show their support. Particular thanks to the Rumney family and to Tim Loadsman (Le. 1951-57) who did a superb job as linesman.

With Christmas hangovers and steaming breath whipped away by the icy winds the OB's arrived at Hove RFC for this years instalment of the Padwin Cup. With honours even from last year there was a real expectancy in the air, round two if you will, a second chance to establish dominance. Icy heads and fiery hearts took the field on the 27th to do battle for just a few inches of silver but a whole institution's respect. It is a shame that in recent years Hurst and Brighton College have discontinued sporting fixtures, but both Old Boy Club sides were adamant whatever the stakes we would fight to keep the long standing rivalry going.

For any school to have a former pupil in a Varsity match at Twickenham is a great honour - to have two, one in each team, is rare. Former Brighton College 1st XV player Ben Maidment (R. 2004-06) helped Cambridge University to a dramatic 31-27 victory over old rival Oxford University - who were also captained by another old Brightonian, Dr Dan Rosen (D. 2000-02), in the 128th Varsity Match at Twickenham.

The College hosted a fund-raising event on Sunday 11th September for the Sam Griffiths Foundation, which has been set up in memory of Sam Griffiths (School, 2005-8) who died in January 2009.

Gosh what a day! The first skirmisher car of the mighty OBs trundled through the wrought iron gates of the Richmond Athletic Ground to quite a magnificent sight. The time was around 10am, the air was already warm and clear, the September sun was scorching. Everywhere were half-dressed young men huddled in small groups, tossing balls around a select inner circle of public school chaps, eager to go to war with historical rivals. All the big names were there: Wellington, Millfield, Rugby, Abingdon (who incidentally have marvellous pink and white shirts), Marlborough, Bryanston, Radley, Harrow, Tonbridge and, of course, Brighton College.

It was a crisp blue December morning that I awoke to on that famous day of the 27th. The sky blue canopy stretched over the farmhouse and melted away into an almost white distance. Scraggy, skeletal looking conifers, stripped of their summer bulk stuck out, dark, jagged and deathly amidst the pure colours above, whilst the ever greens stood rigidly to attention like half cut guardsmen, swaying gently from side to side in the faint north easterly breeze. Two greyish brown rabbits hopped lackadaisically across the lush green paddock below, glinting from the morning glow; I fetched my air rifle.

Contact Us

Brighton College
Eastern Road
Brighton, BN2 0AL


ob@oldbrightonians.com
+44 (0) 1273 704 250
Registered Charity Number: 307061

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