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Left to Right: John Whittaker, Matthew Palfreyman, Owen MacCuish

The boys made it through the Cheshire U18 trial process and into the Cheshire squad to compete at the Northern Divisional Festival matches against Yorkshire, Northumberland and Lancashire in October/November 2014.

The North U18 selectors held trial at Woodhouse Grove, Bradford on 29th December 2014, with twelve Cheshire players asked to attend.

Following the December trial, six Cheshire players – George Bordill, Owen MacCuish, Oscar McCormack, Matthew Palphreyman, Matthew Peakman and John Whittaker – where selected for North U18’s first preparation day held at Newcastle Falcons, Kingston Park in January.

North U18 second preparation day was a warm up match versus Worcester Warriors U18, held at Ellesmere College in early February.

North U18’s final squad selection to represent the six Northern Counties at the England Counties U18 trial held at Loughborough University on 20th February, included five Cheshire players: Owen MacCuish, Oscar McCormack, Matthew Palphreyman, Matthew Peakman and John Whittaker.

England Press release

THE England Counties Under 18 selectors have named an extended squad to prepare for this season’s International Triangular Festival at Hartpury College in Gloucestershire between March 28 and April 4

The extended squad was selected after the Divisional Festival at Loughborough University last weekend and will be trimmed after a further training session at Loughborough on March 15 to produce the final squad for the festival.

England will launch the festival on Saturday March 28 when they face a France side selected from their regional academies.

France will then meet Irish Clubs Under 18s at Hartpury on April 1 with England facing Ireland in the festival finale on Saturday April 4.

England Counties Under 18 Clubs squad:

Jacob Atkins( St Pauls School, Bracknell RFC and Berkshire), Myles Bean (King Edward Vi School, Bedford Blues RFC and Warwickshire), Ruaridh Dawson (Newcastle School for Boys, Blaydon RFC and Northumberland), Connor Hayhow (St Paul’s School, Bracknell RFC and Berkshire), George Jackson (Trinity School, Sutton Epsom RFC and Surrey), Aaron Martin (Bilton School, Bedford Blues RFC and Warwickshire), William Newett (Leeds GS and Yorkshire), James Shillcock (Warwick School, Worcester RFC and Warwickshire), James Spencer (Queen Elizabeth GS, Penrith RFC and Cumbria), Benjamin Usher (The Priory Academy, Newark RFC and Notts, Lincs & Derbyshire), Fergus Wood (Ardingly College, Hove RFC and Sussex).

Harrison Berresford (Hautlieu School, Jersey RFC and Hampshire), Jack Conteh (Myerscough College, Sale Sharks and Lancashire), Tom Doughty (St Bartholomews School, Hove RFC and Sussex), Joseph Duffy (Myerscough College, Sale Sharks and Lancashire), Cameron Gray (The Oratory School, Maidenhead RFC and Berkshire), Max Hill (Worcester Sixth Form College, Malvern RFC and North Midlands), Kiaran Knight (St Peter’s School, Matson RFC and Gloucestershire), Owen McCuish (Sandbach School, Sandbach RFC and Cheshire), John McKenzie (Runshaw College, Preston Grasshoppers RFC and Lancashire), Dylan Morris (Reed’s School, Wimbledon RFC and Surrey), Joshua Novell (Bedes School, Crowborough RFC and Sussex), Matthew Palphreyman (Wirral GS, Wirral RFC and Cheshire), Justin Rowland (George Abbot School, Chobham RFC and Surrey), John Whittaker (Sandbach School, Sandbach RFC and Cheshire).