Olavians and Harrovians Into The Barber Final
17/02/20: The 2020 Alan Barber Cup final will be between defending champions the Old Harrovians and winners from 2004-2018 the Old Olavians after both won their semi-finals at Eton yesterday.
The Old Olavians had a tough match against the runners-up for the last six years the Old Salopians. The Salopians won comfortably at third pair where T Walters and George Thomason, returning from a recent ankle injury, were too strong for Peter White & Prajeeth Sathiyamoorthy, but the Olavians held sway in the top two pairs with three of the key players in their long run of victories - Seb Cooley, James Toop and Howard Wiseman - combining with the younger Tony Barker to see off the Salopian challenge. Cooley & Wiseman always had too much for the in form Rex Worth & Tom Cox at first pair, leaving the key battle at two, where Toop & Barker held their nerve in a tense and crucial second game to win it 15-14, go 2-0 up and break the resistance of Ed Taylor & Sam Welti.
Neither of the two teams in the other semi-final were at full strength, with captain Jonny Ho unavailable for the Cholmeleians and only two of last year's title-winning Harrovian six in action. Emily Scoones became only the second woman (after Charlotta Cooley) to play at this stage of the competition and her third pair match was the longest game of the day as she & Aroop Bhattacharya pushed Ed Hewens & Fred Prickett all the way to five games before finally going down 12-6 in the fifth. Ross Bryan & Rahul Wijeratne were 3-0 winners over Abs Bhattacharya & Niifio Addy at second pair, although the Highgate pair came within a whisker of extending the game into a fourth game, losing the third 15-14. Tom Dunbar and youngster Jonathan Barley had a similar match at first pair against Joe Marks & Matt Kovar, although the key game in this one was the second, which saw a come from behind 15-13 win for the Harrovian pair.
The final takes place at Eton next Sunday afternoon at 2:30pm and all spectators are welcome.
See the full results from this year's competition HERE
Old Olavians beat Old Salopians 2-1
S.Cooley & H.Wiseman beat T.Cox & R.Worth 3-0 (12-2, 12-6, 12-4)
J.Toop & T.Barker beat E.Taylor & S.Welti 3-0 (12-5, 15-14, 12-2)
P.White & P.Sathiyamoorthy lost to G.Thomason & T.Walters 0-3 (9-12, 3-12, 3-12)
Old Harrovians beat Old Cholmeleians 3-0
T.Dunbar & J.Barley beat J.Marks & M.Kovar 3-0 (12-7, 15-13, 12-2)
R.Bryan & R.Wijeratne beat Ab.Bhattacharya & N.Addy 3-0 (12-9, 12-5, 15-14)
E.Hewens & F.Prickett beat E.Scoones & Ar.Bhattacharya 3-2 (12-9, 11-14, 13-11, 10-12, 12-6)
Old Olavians v Old Harrovians at Eton 2:30pm Sunday 23rd February