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Schools' Cup: Royal School Armagh smash Campbell College in successful revenge mission

RS Armagh 34-6 Campbell College


Scrum-half Charlie Worth was one of a number of impressive performers for Armagh

Scrum-half Charlie Worth was one of a number of impressive performers for Armagh

Matt Mackey/Presseye

Royal School Armagh host Campbell College in the tie of the round

Royal School Armagh host Campbell College in the tie of the round

Scrum-half Charlie Worth was one of a number of impressive performers for Armagh

Royal School Armagh had revenge on their minds when they were pitted against Campbell College in the last 16 of the Danske Bank Schools' Cup.

It was the final instalment of a recent trilogy, Armagh having fallen to late heartache at the hands of their visitors in both the 2018 final and last year's semi.

Talk before the game was that this year, finally, Armagh had the quality to come out on the right side but few would have predicted just how emphatic a result they could earn and performance they could put in.

Five tries, five different scorers and a 28-point victory over last year's runners-up.

While they could have been forgiven for getting excited, the victorious camp we're even satisfied.

"We showed our quality in the second half but we can definitely get better. We'll be out on Monday looking to improve," said skipper Sam Rainey, who also gave an insight into the added motivation for their convincing win.

"It always goes back to those two years when Campbell punished us. Those results were in the back of everyone's heads this morning.

"We beat them a couple of weeks ago but we know they're a different animal come cup time. We knew we had to be on top of our game. After the opening 10 minutes or so, we really got into our stride and played some good rugby."

As the strengthening breeze at Campbell's backs in the first half foreshadowed the impending arrival of Storm Ciara, so Armagh's early resistance heralded a second half mauling.

The Belfast school will have known they needed to make the most of the blustery conditions before the break and in the early exchanges, they threatened to do just that.

Scrum-half Harry Bell briefly dictated play and it was in that spell that Campbell managed to spread the bal wide to wing Callum Florence but he was well bundled into touch before he could go over.

Similarly, when Archie Gillies fed Danny Williamson, it took top defensive work from impressive Armagh wing Chris Whiteside to hold him up.

Armagh would, in all likelihood, have taken being within a score at the break but they would soon go on to stamp their dominance much more effectively than that.

After Jack Bonner put Campbell ahead with a penalty, scant reward for their early territorial dominance, Armagh forged upfield and showed a clinical edge after a James Agnew break led to Jude Roberts forcing over at the ruck.

It was a huge bonus for Armagh and when Romain Morrow kicked both the conversion and a penalty to cancel out Bonner's second successful kick, they had a 10-6 advantage at the break.

From there, the final result was all-too predictable. There was a storm coming.

It duly arrived just a couple of minutes into the second half, centre Ross Taylor romping home via good play from fly-half Charlie Worth and Morrow to spread the play for 15-6.

If the first half was about Armagh's stout defensive efforts, the second, wind behind, was an opportunity for the backs to showcase their skills. They were only just getting started.

Morrow would soon make a telling break for try number three, Niall Carville the man to push over.

The Armagh half-back partnership's influence was growing by the minute and Worth was the creator for the fourth score, throwing a neat dummy to work space and selflessly passing for replacement Joshua Cunningham to race over unopposed and open up a 23 point advantage.

Openside flanker Josh King was the man to find a gap for the fifth and final try, his break putting Armagh on the brink only for Worth to jink past the defence and in for a deserved score.

Armagh were better all across the pitch, from Roberts and King in the pack, through the half-backs to Whiteside on the wing.

Revenge mission complete. Now they're going to take some stopping.

Schools' Cup last 16 results in full

Ballyclare High School 17-17 Friends' School Lisburn

Royal School Armagh 34-6 Campbell College

Bangor Grammar School 6-36 Wallace High School

Grosvenor Grammar School 0-40 Enniskillen Royal Grammar School

RBAI 47-12 BRA

Cambridge House 32-0 Methodist College Belfast

Down High School 12-51 Ballymena Academy

Coleraine Grammar School 19-27 Sullivan Upper School

Here's our feature game as it happened:

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Belfast Telegraph