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Oxford Fixtures Wk 4-6 (MT) 2018

Week four to six of fixtures for Michaelmas has happened recently. Thanks to our captains, the reports are found below:

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Women’s Blues

Women’s Blue vs.  Loughborough (Away), Wk4: Win (4-0)

On Wednesday the Women’s Blues travelled to Loughborough for their third away fixture of the season. This week the team was Jane, Charly, Alex and Laura. First on court were Charly and Jane. Charly had a tough five setter and did really well to win it in the fifth. Jane played some great squash and won 3-0. Alex put in a good performance to win 3-0, and Laura also won without dropping a game. Overall, the team had a clean sweep winning 4-0. Well done to the girls and we wish them luck for their first home game in a while versus Nottingham this Wednesday!

Women’s Blue vs.  Nottingham 2nds (Home), Wk5: Loss (3-1)

This Wednesday saw out Blues team facing the top of the league, Nottingham 2nds. Currently sitting second in our league, we always knew that it would be a great game, and one to watch!
Both sides put out their strongest teams, playing top 4 seeds. 2s and 4s went on first, and both had well fought games. Laura as always managed to get ahead, and won her match 3-0, continuing her 100% win streak in this, her 5th game for the Blues, and confirming her position as MVP. On the other court Isabel was struggling, and not on her best form, so the game went 3-0 the other way.
Next up were 1s and 3s. There was some serious competition here, and some seriously high-level squash. Hayley struggled against their top seed though, and although close, the game was only ever going one way, and Nottingham 2nds took the match 3-0. Alethea was our only hope, and managed to take the first game. Nottingham showed their depth of quality though, and eventually we lost that one 3-2 — it was very close, and a worthy end to a very hard-fought match.
Hopefully we’ll be able to turn the tables when we play them again in Hilary!

Women’s Blue vs.  Leicester 2nds (Home), Wk6: Win (4-0)

Leicester was only able to get 3 players out to our match on Wednesday, which was a shame for Cabbage, but we’ll take all the points we can get this year! It was our first re-match of the year, and we knew that we could beat them, having won 4-0 away at the beginning of the term.
Isabel stepped on court for probably her best performance in a BUCS match this term, storming through to take her match 3-0 and showing us all what she’s made of. Laura had an equally successful and short match, also winning 3-0, making this 6 BUCS matches in a row where she’s won her seed. Hayley had a better match, against Leicester’s star player, being more closely fought and very good to watch. Still, Oxford was on track, and after some fiddling around with the heaters, and potentially a psychological advantage over her opponent, Hayley powered through to take the match 3-1. Overall it was a very successful day, and another win for Oxford in the books!

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Squirrels

Men’s Squirrels vs. Leicester 2nds (Home), Wk4: Win (5-0)

Week 4 brought along a sigh of relief to the Squirrels, as it meant the start of a 3-week spell of home matches. This week we faced Leicester 2nds who were at the bottom of the league table and had yet to win a single set. The odds looked in our favour, but just to be sure, we fielded a mix of players – some familiar, and some newer faces. Ed B, Ed C, Nikhil, Amar and Sam hit the courts for warm up just as the Leicester boys showed up, looking fresh and determined. 4th and 5th seeds Amar and Sam started their matches first. It was clear right from the first few rallies, that Leicester were not going to win their first set of the season this time. The Leicester boys simply were not of the same calibre as other teams in the league. Sam relentlessly defeated his opponent conceding a total of only 7 points, while Amar toyed with his opponent initially before finally ending his match on a similar scoreline. Nikhil played a very technical game and stuck to basics, giving him 3 sets of score 11-5. Ed C also won with straight sets, but conceded a fair number of points to his impulsive and ‘flick’-styled opponent, only because of his prolonged illness taking a toll on his fitness. Leicester’s only player who might have marginally scraped an entry into the Squirrels, (had he been an Oxford student) was their first seed – unfortunately for him, he faced Ed B, who dished out a thrashing of 11-3, 11-5, 11-3. It was a sorry state of affairs for Leicester – getting all-out bageled is never a nice feeling, but add a 3 hour return drive, and another (cup) match with us at Iffley next week to the mix? Ouch. But fair play to those boys! The Squirrels currently stand strong at the top of the league table, with Nottingham 3rds looking like our only real threat!

Men’s Squirrels vs.  Leicester 2nds (Home), Wk5: Win (5-0)

The Squirrels’ first Cup fixture of the season saw us face Leicester 2nds at home yet again, having relentlessly defeated them in the previous week’s league fixture. We knew this was going to be an easy and quick match, and that we were guaranteed a win regardless of who we fielded. Milad and Rory were running late, due to extended tutorials, leaving 3rd and 4th seeds Kharthik and Caspar to begin the matches. Despite trying to prolong some rallies, Kharthik found it hard to concede points to his opponent – he won easily and only gave his opponent 5 points throughout the entire match! Caspar similarly won his match 3-0, while also attempting a lob-based gameplay, which was quite different to what he was used to. 2nd seed Colin started his match next just as Milad arrived, panting and out of breath from his hurried journey. Colin didn’t try anything fancy in his first set, just to test the waters with his opponent. Having seen nothing special in his opponent’s gameplay, he demolished the next 2 sets, ending his match 11-6, 11-2, 11-3. Milad started off his match well, winning his first 2 sets 11-1 and 11-0, against Leicester’s replacement 5th seed sourced from their 3rd team. Feeling sorry for his opponent, Milad started giving more opportunities, but this soon made him lose concentration and rhythm, ultimately losing his 3rd set 7-11. A quick pep-talk between sets made him regain focus, and win his final set 11-4. Rory showed up fashionably late, jumped on the court for a quick warm-up, and then relentlessly thrashed his opponent 11-3, 11-0, 11-1. This week’s cup fixture placed the Squirrels in the 2nd round of the Midlands Conference Cup, to face Loughborough 2nds in Week 7!

Men’s Squirrels vs.  Birmingham 3rds (Home), Wk6: Win (4-1)

Report coming shortly!

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Ferrets

Women’s Ferrets vs.  Nottingham 4ths (Home), Wk5: Loss (3-1)

On Wednesday we saw the return of Nottingham 4ths, this time on home soil. There was some absolutely stellar squash played, and a month of training definitely paid off – however the Nottingham girls powered through to a 3-1 victory, but not without a fight from the Ferrets. In her debut match, Flavia put on a stunning display of varied shots against her fourth seed counterpart. In particular, her rocket serves gave her strings of uncontested points. Despite some hotly contested sets, Nottingham took the game 3-0. Next up playing seed 3 was Sarah, who has absolutely ranked up the heat since last match and absolutely pounded her Nottingham counterpart. A variety of immensely strong back-court drives and some well-timed lobs won her an easy 3-0 win for the first game win of the season for the Ferrets. For second seed, Intie saw herself up against a very evenly match Nottingham player. Despite being in the throws of what looked like frank bronchitis, Intie fought for absolutely every point and did some outright athletic runs of the court. A very strong backhand receive put her in good set, winning the first and third sets with relative ease. In an ‘epic-ally’ long match that went to five sets, Intie narrowly missed out on a win by a powerful final set from the Nottingham second, Nottingham taking the game 3-2. In first seed was Lisa, up against a very strong Nottingham counterpart – with characteristic flair, Lisa pounded out some fantastic cross court boasts and a strong drop-ball game. She won the first set with a nail biting 14-12 score. In the end, the Nottingham player warmed up into her game and drove down some very strong long drives that saw her win 4-1 in a game of incredible squash. Pleased with the first game win of the season under our belts, the Ferrets leave hungry for their next away game against Leicester next week.

Ferrets

Women’s Ferrets vs.  Leicester 2nds (Away), Wk6: Win (3-0)

The Ferrets tracked back North to Leicster for the second away game of the season. Our Mercedez was replaced by a huge red Citreon ‘Tank’, and after a spacious drive there, featuring minor mishaps with Leicster’s one-way system (which may or may not have resulted in an emergency stop), the squad arrived with spirits (and maybe even adrenaline) running high. Jess, Sarah and Marj were representing, clinching an absolute straight-out victory for the squad. Marj dominated the court with some incredibly impressive deep cross court drives and a solid front court game, winning her game in three straight sets with ease. With characteristic flare, Sarah owned space with deep lobs and a great variety of back court shots, controlling the T and maintaining a strong and consistent serve. Sarah finished her game 3 sets to 0. Jess powered out intense serving streaks, countering the strong front game of her opponent with some fast front court dashes, also coming out with a 3-0 victory. With an afternoon of success under their belts, the Ferrets returned to Oxford as victors, with a stop of at Maccy D’s for a dinner for champions…. (Sarah had vouchers for club sandwich deals). With an increasingly positive performance from as the term progresses, the Ferrets now turn forward to next weeks away game against Nottingham 3rds, which is likely to be our most challenging match yet.

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