St Joseph's team are top of the props

ST JOSEPH'S College in Ipswich are top of the props in a national league table for junior rugby today.The independent school's under-15 rugby side have an impressive win rate of 94 per cent this year, a statistic which puts them ahead their peers from of a number of fee-paying schools with rich traditions for the game.

Stuart Watson

ST JOSEPH'S College in Ipswich are top of the props in a national league table for junior rugby today.

The independent school's under-15 rugby side have an impressive win rate of 94 per cent this year, a statistic which puts them ahead their peers from of a number of fee-paying schools with rich traditions for the game.

In the national Schools Rugby table, which chronicles every school in the country's junior rugby results for the season, St Joseph's are one per cent clear of three other under-15 sides when it comes to win rate per fixture.


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Notable establishments to trail St Joseph's in the table include second placed Wellington College, the Berkshire college having been one of the 22 founding members of the RFU.

Rugby School, the birthplace of the sport, is as low as 152nd in the table.

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Chris Branch, coach of the successful side, said: “The boys are just legends. There are some really prestigious schools on that list so to top it is amazing.

“They are not the biggest of lads for their age so we have tried to get them playing a very dynamic style of rugby, very much like the Welsh side.”

In all, the Suffolk team have won 16 of their 17 domestic matches and drew the other - a 7-7 result at home against Norwich School in the Daily Mail Cup which knocked them out at the fourth round.

Among these fixtures was a three-game tour of Italy in October last year where, among a trio of victories, St Joseph's comprehensively beat the Italian under-15 champions Petrarca Padova 49-3.

Branch said: “It all started with a great win in our first game of the season against Coopers' Company and Coborn. We had never beaten them before so that was a huge confidence boost.

“The Italian tour was a great experience, but although the lads were distraught at going out of the cup against Norwich by virtue of being at home, they bounced back even stronger.

“We're very excited about this generation of players and next year they should provide us with a formidable first team.”

In addition to many of the St Joseph's squad playing club rugby for Colchester, four have experience of playing for the Northamp-ton Saints academy team.

A further four players have played junior rugby for the Eastern Counties, while a further four have represented their county.

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