14 March 2017
Kirkham Grammar School 1st Seven travelled to the North of England 7's at Birkenhead Park, hoping to defend the Bowring Trophy they had won in 2015. Having gained two fine tournament wins at Christ Brecon and Colstons the previous weekends the squad travelled with confidence to the North of England's top schoolboy tournament. First up were French Invitation school Sacre Coeur School and although Kirkham started slowly the team lead by Kieran Wilkinson started to gel and tries were scored by the outstanding Connor Doherty ,Andrew Bullman and Nathan Pope as KGS ran out 35-0 winners. Next up was a local derby verses Lancaster Royal Grammar School, again Kirkham dominated from the start and Evan Powell and Connor Doherty scored a number of tries as KGS won 33-0. Forwards Josh Moreau and Sam Dugdale were causing other sides problems with their power and strength and hooker Teddy Leatherbarrow was outstanding in defence. This was apparent as they took Old Swinford Hospital School apart with a 50-0 victory with winger Andrew Bulman scoring 3 tries. Last game in the group was against the undefeated Giggleswick School, who had been playing well. Despite going behind Kirkham scored some excellent tries through Josh Moreau and Connor Docherty as they completed a 22-7 win which took them into the quarter finals against Queen Ethelburga's. In a tense game Kirkham had to defend for long periods but also scored fine individual tries from Josh Moreau, Kieran Wilkinson and Nathan Pope gave them a 17-10 victory.
The semi-final was another tough encounter verses Pocklington School but with KGS defending well it was only a matter of time before Kirkham again got the opportunity to attack scoring three quick tries from Evan Powell(2) and Connor Doherty which took them clear and into the final. In the final Kirkham were matched against gritty Yorkshire side Woodhouse Grove. KGS opened the scoring with a fine Nathan Pope try but Woodhouse fought back but were unable to score. Just before half time KGS got the score they deserved which took them clear when Sam Dugdale crashed over the line. Straight after half time Captain Kieran Wilkinson sealed the victory as he scored the under posts. Kirkham continued to score and ran out at 31-0 winners. Connor Docherty was voted Player of Tournament by the referee’s society. Kirkham were winning the tournament for the fourth time in the history of this prestigious tournament.