RugbyPass announced as principal media partner for the World Schools Festival 2022

RugbyPass will be the official media partner of the World Schools Festival which takes place in Thailand this year from the 11th to the 18th December.

The festival’s main cup will feature eight of the top age-grade rugby sides in the world as they battle it out to see who can be named the strongest schoolboy rugby side on the planet.

An open tournament will also feature four invitational sides from around the globe.

Rugby fans will be able to watch all the live coverage and highlights of the festival on the RugbyPass’ YouTube channel.

The announcement as official media partner to the festival reflects RugbyPass’ desire to grow interest in rugby for the next generation.

The Pattana Sports Resort in Thailand is the destination where the Festival takes place and offers the perfect location for the teams to prepare and play in this elite competition.

Excitement is growing as stellar names in the schoolboy rugby sphere are announced in the festival.

The teams that have thrown their hat in so far include…

Sedbergh School (England)

Many would call Sedbergh the best rugby school in England, with internationals Will Greenwood, Will Carling and Tomas Francis attending the school. The boys in brown have been one of the most dominant sides on the English schoolboy rugby circuit for decades and in 2018, they went unbeaten beating top sides such as Wellington.

Their recent one point victory over elite Irish outfit Blackrock College further demonstrated how much respect the Cumbrian side should command when it comes to the festival in December.

Simon Mulholland, Director of Rugby at Sedbergh said: “This is a fantastic new event for schools to showcase the very best of school rugby. We are incredibly proud and excited to be part of such a great line-up of schools from around the world. It’s going to be a truly unique week for everyone. The tournament is ground-breaking, and as a rugby experience it will give our players lifelong memories of representing the school.”

Hamilton Boys’ High (New Zealand)

First XV champions Hamilton are without a doubt one of the best age-grade rugby sides in the world. The Waikato school, which saw Warren Gatland and Sean Maitland pass through its storied school, have brought many All Black rugby players through their ranks, and they also boast some up and coming stars that everyone should keep their eye on, like Payton Spencer, son of the legendary Carlos.

The school was the subject of the highly successful fifth series of “The Season”, a documentary which intimately followed the team in 2019 as they hoped to win the Super 8 title.

Hamilton will be highly fancied by many to win the cup competition given their recent success domestically.

Grey College (South Africa)

Grey has for decades been portrayed as a behemoth within global schoolboy rugby, producing 46 Springboks, including World Cup winners Francois Steyn and Bismarck du Plessis. Playing in their iconic grey jersey with a hint of orange, the school has earned a name for itself for their ruthless style of play.

Over the past decade, they have enjoyed four unbeaten seasons, further conveying just how dominant this rugby side is.

At the World Schools Festival 2019, Grey swatted aside all-comers and this group shall travel to the World Schools Festival with a weight of expectation to impress.

St Michael’s College (Ireland)

The Dublin-based college have long been admired for the quality of rugby player that the school has produced, and Ireland’s brilliant school’s system has been credited with leading Ireland to the No 1 ranking in the world.

Modern Irish rugby internationals such as Dan Leavy, James Ryan, Ross Byrne and Ronan Kelleher are just some of the players that have come through the ranks at the college.

Leinster School’s Cup titles in 2012 and 2019 further illustrate the pedigree of this rugby production line.

Millfield School (England)

The men in red, green and blue have time and time again proved themselves as trend-setters in England, with notable alumni including Chris Robshaw and world great, Gareth Edwards. They enjoyed an unbeaten season in the 2020/2021 season and there will be fevered speculation about how well they will perform in the competition in Thailand.

Director of Rugby John Mallett had this to say about the school taking part in the competition.

“Rugby is not only about competing hard on the field, but also making friendships for life off the field. We are very excited to

be playing in a new competition and format alongside some of the very best rugby playing schools in the world. It is truly a

unique and ground-breaking tournament, and will definitely showcase school’s rugby.”

The final three sides that taking part in the festival will be announced in the coming weeks.