DEFENDING champions Barton RFC were knocked out in the last four of the Rugeley Sevens competition at the weekend.
The village side lost to Birmingham Bees’ development squad but have another chance to bag some silverware this weekend in the club’s own sevens tournament, 11am start at Holland Park.
Barton skipper Matt Knight thanked team manager Danny Carlin for his efforts at the tournament.
“Danny has been planning all season for this competition and has pulled together a squad of players who in the semi-final provided the most exciting rugby this competition has ever seen,” he said.
“Next Saturday we’re hosting the Staffordshire Sevens competition at Holland Park, our home ground and will make sure the winning trophy is ours.”
Barton were put in a group with Rugeley’s first XV and a touring side, Beeches RFC.
First up for Barton was Rugeley, who were swept aside in a one-sided encounter, Barton walking away 26-0 winners.
There was a 30-minute wait until Barton would then be tested by Beeches, who were something of a mystery side.
The first few minutes were a bit shaky for the holders, but after the first try for Barton they ran out comfortable winners by an impressive 31-0 scoreline.
Barton then went in to the quarter-finals and were paired with Staffordshire rivals Cannock RFC and after an impressive start Barton came away with their biggest win of the day, taking it 33-0.
In the semi-finals Barton were paired with Birmingham Bees, who were probably the best team there on the day.
Their speed and passing ability to cut teams apart was a pleasure to watch but Barton started the game very strongly by defending and pushing the Birmingham side back to their try line from halfway.
However, a quick break saw Birmingham run the length of the pitch and score.
Barton kept their heads high and hit back almost immediately with a try before the break which saw them take the lead at 12-5 at half-time.
The second half saw another excellent performance from Barton but a lovely kick down the pitch by Birmingham fed their fast winger, who bolted downfield to pick up and score.
At 12-12 both teams did their fair share of defending and at full-time the scores remained level, necessitating extra time.
Barton defended well but in the last minute of the game Birmingham kicked a penalty and progressed to the final thanks to the sudden death rule.
They then beat Eccleshall 33-0 in the final.