Glantaf reach Wembley for the second time

Rugby League’s Year 7 Boys Champion Schools Final returns to Wembley Stadium on Saturday 8 June, when St Peters Catholic High School of Wigan take on Cardiff’s Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Glantaf in the Steven Mullaney Memorial Game.  


Supported by inspiresport, Champion Schools is the RFL’s flagship schools’ competition for girls and boys at years 7 to 11. The Year 7 Boys Final is named after Steven Mullaney, the schoolboy who in 1986 thrilled spectators and television viewers alike by scoring a superb solo try as Wakefield schools defeated St Helens at Wembley in the Challenge Cup Final curtain-raiser, but who died in tragic circumstances the following year.   


Ysgol Glantaf will make their second appearance at Wembley Stadium on June 8 having previously won the Year 7 Boys’ Final back in 2015. The team will be flying the Welsh flag high when they take to the pitch with the Cardiff school continuing to impress following an appearance at St James’ Park in Newcastle for the Year 10 Girls’ Final last year.


Glantaf began their campaign with a trip to London’s Langley Park who they successfully defeated 38-4 before their quarter final victory against Archbishop Sentamu Academy. Next up was an outstanding semi-final performance against Outwood Academy Freeston with the side progressing to Wembley after a 50-4 triumph.


St Peter’s have a rich history in this competition and have already featured in both the Year 11 Boys’ and Girls’ Finals in April and now their Year 7 Boys’ will have their chance to shine on the biggest of stages. Their journey to Wembley started with a defeat of Malet Lambert to set up a quarter final against Cumbria’s St Benedict’s Catholic High School. The resulting victory saw them face Malet Lambert once again in the semi-finals, and whilst the Hull side persevered, St Peter’s were eventually too strong and came out on top with a 26-6 win.


RFL National Education Manager, Andrea Murray, says: “Congratulations to both schools on making it to Wembley Stadium. Both teams have done incredibly well throughout the tournament and are a real credit to their coaches. The boys will be following in the footsteps of some famous Rugby League names who have played in the Steven Mullaney Memorial Game – among them Kevin Sinfield, Denis Betts, Bobbie Goulding and Phil Clarke.  


“Champion Schools is not just about the teams involved but it is also giving opportunities to the next generation of Match Officials – including Liam and Cameron Breheny. It was fantastic to see the two brothers taking charge of the semi-finals, and I look forward to seeing them progress their refereeing careers. I’d also like to thank Rochdale Mayfield for hosting, it was a brilliant occasion, and everyone involved had a fantastic day.”


The inspiresport Champion Schools Year 7 Boys Final will be played at Wembley Stadium on Saturday 8 June (KO 10am) with Finals Day scheduled to take place on Friday 5 July at the DIY Kitchens Stadium in Wakefield. All finalists will be confirmed in the coming weeks as the competition progresses.