Though the Boat Race attracts London’s antipodean community and the Varsity Rugby fills Twickenham, surely the finest day of sport in the Oxford calendar took place Saturday 3rd May. Set in the glorious Parks, Mixed Lacrosse Cuppers provided a day of unmatched sporting and social entertainment. With a World Cup-style format there were two initial group stages from whence two teams would progress. The first pool instantly won the alias of the ‘Group of Death’ given the presence of Hertford, Teddy Hall and wildcard danger St Catz. To the uninitiated that means reigning champions (Hertford), eventual winners (Teddy Hall) and most improved this year (Catz) – essentially France, Brazil and Senegal all in the same group. In the first game of the tournament Catz led only to be pegged back by a brave Hall surge securing both sides a valuable point apiece. Hertford would go on to convincing wins over Worcester and St Anne’s stamping their authority on the group. This meant Catz and Hall would have to scrap over the remaining placein order to go through. Meanwhile in the other group Magdalen did well to whip their confident if not experienced troops into shape. They would go on to progress alongside the strong but college-heavy collective Wadham-Exeter-Hilda’s. The ‘Group of Death’ would prove to be complicated toresolve. A last gasp Hertford equaliser against Teddy Hall secured their qualification spot meaning Catz and Hall needed a playoff to separate the two teams. Inspired by the eye-catching Jen Myatt, Hall proved too good for Catz. The semi–finals saw a shock as Hertford were knocked out by Wadham-Exeter-Hilda’s. In the other semi Hall sent a warning out by thrashing Magdalen fivenil. With flair going forward and a solid back line held together by Rich Stubley they went into the final with confidence. The final saw Hall defeat Wadham-Exeter-Hilda’s to confirm the widely held suspicion that they were the best team this year. However the victory wasn’t achieved easily as this match up turned out to be the most dramatic of the day. After the regulation ten minutes of normal time the scores were deadlocked and extra time was called upon. It was in those five minutes that Hall pulled out all the stops to produce a two-nil victory. Player of the tournament was surely Ruth Evans who exemplified the skill and determination of Teddy Hall. “The team showed a great deal of flair,” top goal scorer Jessica Hatcher told Cherwell. “We had not practised much together beforehand but worked well as a team on the day.” Next year this event will surely get bigger and better. What finer way to represent your college and build friendships than in this superb tournament? Well done to organiser Debashish Biswas and congratulations to everyone that took part.
ARCHIVE: 2nd Week TT 2003