One week before the schools return from their summer break, Scottish Rugby has made its last call for entries to this season’s flagship schools’ rugby tournament – the Brewin Dolphin Scottish Schools’ Cup.
Last season Fettes College edged out Stewart’s Melville College in a dramatic nine-try under-18 final (39-28) after Edinburgh Academy saw off city rivals George Watson’s College (29-21) in the under-15 final both on the international pitch at Murrayfield in front of a vociferous 5152 crowd.
Following the announcement that investment manager Bell Lawrie – re-branded as Brewin Dolphin – extended its sponsorship of the Scottish Schools Cup to include a girls’ competition, Scottish Rugby’s Head of Community Rugby, Colin Thomson, is confident the tournament will continue to be the focus for development for many schools throughout the country.
He said: “Schools rugby introduces thousands of children to rugby in a fun and enjoyable way and is often the hook that sees many continue their participation from school into clubs and onwards into adult life.
“Following the unanimous vote at the 2009 Scottish Rugby Union AGM, Scottish rugby is now a fully integrated game and the inclusion of competitions for schoolgirls within the Brewin Dolphin Scottish Schools Cup sponsorship is a great example of rugby being developed and supported in an integrated fashion.”
In 2004 the under-15 boys’ competition was added to run alongside the existing under-18 tournament and now over 240 Scottish school teams take part every year.
The new three-year deal with the investment manager saw the partnership with Scottish Rugby extended until 2012 under the new title ‘The Brewin Dolphin Scottish Schools Cup’.
Marc Wilkinson, Senior Divisional Director at Brewin Dolphin, said: “We are delighted to be sponsoring the Scottish Schools Cup again this year, now under our new company name Brewin Dolphin.
“We hope to welcome several new schools to the tournament, as more teams take the opportunity to compete in this national cup competition. Each year hundreds of schools teams enjoy the experience of competing, playing schools they otherwise wouldn’t, with the ultimate goal of running out at Murrayfield and lifting silverware. In addition, each school which enters will receive a set of rugby balls and other kit which we hope enhances their experience.”