W3 came into this year’s Varsity with hopes to defeat the Cambridge team that had narrowly won the previous year. The two days of tennis featured some truly excellent play from all seven team members despite the oven-like conditions on the hard courts. In no particular order:
• Bethy comfortably cruised through her singles and doubles matches before lunch on Saturday with the highly consistent and never-giving-up-on-rallies fashion that she is known for.
• Ellie managed to bounce back from heatstroke caused by two long back-to-back close matches on the first day and due to the drawn-out rallies of her first singles match easily ran the most out of the entire team through the two days.
• Chloe made winning doubles matches look like no big feat with victories through the two days and to a casual onlooker seemed almost unbothered by the hot conditions of the first day as they didn’t appear to affect the quality of any of her shots.
• Isabelle powered through her matches with powerful groundstrokes, great net play, and the extra magic of a left-handed player.
• Francesca wowed us all with her net play as she effortlessly returned almost any shot coming her way and managed to turn tricky situations into winners.
• Ella’s confidence in outmanoeuvring her opponents was truly striking and, among others, she won a rather tricky looking match against the Cambridge first seed.
• Liisa put a lot of energy into cheering on the team through Saturday, made sure the team stayed hydrated and well snacked, and managed to win her matches through the latter part of the weekend.
Overall the Oxford W3 managed to capture a win over the Cambridge team before all the matches were finished on Sunday with a final score of 15-6! Our Captain Belle deserves all the praise for coming up with the winning doubles combinations for Varsity and for insisting that doubles play includes high fives after all points through the training sessions. This, accompanied by the team favourite ‘tall shot’ (in all its variations), provided us with concentration through long matches and great level of play that culminated in the Varsity win!