Junior Teams Finals Day Preview

Article published:
April 25, 2023

It’s not just the Titans for whom the season has reached the concluding phase. For two of Taunton RFC’s talented junior sides, this coming Sunday marks the climax of a successful season’s rugby as both the Under 14sand Under 15s (Typhoons) are heading to Cheddar to contest Somerset county cup finals.


Although both teams have had busy fixture lists with weekly games, the Somerset Cup represents the one opportunity to take part in a formal competition. The Typhoons have overcome Bridgwater, Oldfield and Frome en route to the big dance with the standout performance coming in the semi-final where Frome were trounced 50-0.


Standing in the path of the Typhoons in the final are Keynsham RFC and there is history between the two sides. In a game at Veritas Park at the start of last season Keynsham gave no quarter and walloped the Typhoons 75-0. This served as a spur to the Taunton lads to improve and their coach Adam Leach acknowledges that they have worked very hard over the last 18months to get better and compete. By the semi-final stage of last season, they had narrowed the divide with Keynsham to a close defeat by 26-18. This year, though, there is a determination to go a step further and, with many of the squad involved in the Bristol Bears Academy pathway – six of them in the elite Excel programme – there is every reason to believe that they have what it takes to bring home the chocolates this Sunday. In their most recent run-out against Ivybridge, one of the top-ranked sides in Devon, the Typhoons won 47-28. The team is taking nothing for granted though and all the lads are aware that Keynsham will be a tough match-up.


For the Under 14s, knowns as the Rebels, this season marks the first foray into competitive rugby as every game up to Under 13 age group is a friendly with the focus on inclusivity. The final in Cheddar marks the end of a long journey for the squad, having beaten Hornets in the first round back in October. This earned them a home tie against Bristol Harlequins which was played on the main pitch at Veritas Park. The boys were able to rise to the occasion and saw off the Bristolians 36-0 with team manager Sam Wallis praising both the attack and the defence.


In the semi-final the Rebels hosted Chew Valley, familiar foes having played them previously in a friendly fixture. The game again took place on the Titans’ pitch and once more it boosted the home team’s morale as they sealed a fine victory 34 – 14. Speaking about the squad of 32 boys who have participated in the cup run, Wallis said, “Even if not selected to play in the fixture, the team has stood pitch side, cheering their team-mates on and clapping the opposition at the end of the game.”


Like the Typhoons, the opposition in the final will be Keynsham who beat Chard in the semi-final. Chard are regular opponents of the Rebels and the Taunton side know them to be a strong team so nothing less than their ‘A’ game will do this Sunday. A number of the Rebels side have also entered the Bristol Bears development pathway and though co-captains Samuel and Dylan have led well from the front, the whole squad retains an ethos of unity and prioritises the team rather than the individual.



Both teams will be well-supported at Cheddar with Typhoons taking a 70-seater coach as well as an anticipated 60 more following in cars. The Rebels too have a bus heading up the M5 in addition to plenty of friends and family making their won way there. As luck would have it, the Under 12s (the Eagles) also have a game at Cheddar on Sunday to round off their season and both finalist teams will hope that they stay on to lend their support too.


Everyone associated with the teams – players, parents, families, supporters and coaches – is so proud of the efforts of the lads all season and particularly so in reaching Somerset Cup Finals. No doubt they also go with the well wishes of all followers of Taunton RFC. Good luck lads and enjoy your big day

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Article published by:

Richard Kitzinger


Rugby fan and Taunton resident, Richard loves watching Titans and creates written content for the rugby club.