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Your News Epsom showcase for Prep school's rugby talent

The prep schools' National Schools Rugby Tournament (NSRT) will be held at Epsom College for the eighth time this Sunday, March 1.

More than a thousand players aged nine to 11 braved bitterly cold weather conditions recently in the London & South East regional qualifying round at Epsom when, despite the ever present threat of snow, spectators were treated to a high class exhibition of running rugby from prep school teams throughout the region.

Among the local schools to qualify for the finals were Cumnor House (Under 9 and U11), Feltonfleet (U9), Chinthurst (U11), Danes Hill (U11) and Shrewsbury House (U9, U10 and U11). They will be joined at the finals by qualifiers from regional rounds in the south west, the midlands and the north, and Andrew Scoular, community rugby director at the RFU, will be in attendance.

Also there will be London Wasps' former France international, Serge Betsen, who will be signing autographs and presenting the trophies at the finals, which will include an U8 tag competition for the third time and an extended U13 tournament. The U11 event will be at the nearby Tadworth Cricket Club.

Now in its 14th year overall, the NSRT is a top event in the prep schools' rugby calendar, with 170 teams from more than 80 schools entering this season. Many of the youngsters who have participated have gone forward to play rugby for England, Wales and Scotland at U16, U18, U19 and U20 levels.

"We are delighted to be hosting the finals of the NSRT again," said Epsom College headmaster Stephen Borthwick. "Not only does it go a long way towards supporting grass roots rugby in this country, but it also lays good foundations for team spirit and the pursuit of sporting excellence."

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