Wokking All Over The Court
Lewis Drummond reports:
11/12/23: The Wisteria Wok (the Magdalene College, Cambridge beginners competition) recently returned for its third edition.
As a tournament for those who have recently taken up the sport, the standard of fives was exceptional. After the field had been somewhat reduced due to some too-intense clubbing the night before, there still remained three groups and 12 pairs vying for a place in the knockout stages.
The pool played at the Magdalene court was won by Tom Ford & Anjali Mistry. The Magdalenite pairing of James Gibson & Jonah Barretto put up a strong fight finishing second in the group. Cerianne Clarke & Eliot Patient showed some real promise in their matches with Ceri displaying all the skills she learnt from playing in the Varsity match last year.
The morning group at the sports centre had some of the closest games of the morning. Claire Hunter & Jenna Frost had to contend with two of the favourites to make the knock-outs, George Penny & John Cunneen and the Queens’ Pairing of Anna Fitzpatrick and Conal Lowe. Claire & Jenna improved their play through the day but couldn’t quite get over the line against either of their opponents. The group decider went down to the wire but George & John emerged victorious.
The final group was a rather short affair after being hit by a few drop outs.Julie Jung & Nyneisha Bansal learnt how to play earlier in the day and played remarkably well against Stefan Tuchel & Emilia Colinson (the eventual winning pair), managing to cut them down successfully a handful of times. However, Stefan & Emilia managed to win quite comfortably.
The semi-final line up was then decided with the exception of one spot for the winners of the Repechage. This was to be played by Anna & Conal against Jonah & James but due to a rather unhelpfully scheduled rowing outing, James & Jonah had to pull out and were replaced by Claire & Jenna, setting up a rematch from the earlier pool stages. Both pairs were in brilliant form. The match was very tight but eventually Anna and Conal managed to squeeze victory (12-10), with Anna showing all the experience she had gained from playing the Richard Black Cup the week before.
The first semi-final Saw Tom & Anjali see off Anna & Conal, with a scoreline not reflecting the hard fought rallies. The second semi was yet another easy victory for Stefan & Emilia, who defeated George & John and had managed to reach the final without losing a single point.
The final was an intense best-of-3 match that took us past sunset. With an electric crowd full of former Wok finalists, both pairs put on a show. The first set was tight, with everyone giving it their all. Stefan & Emilia only snuck past Tom & Anjali, but they entered the next set all guns blazing and dominated, seizing a decisive victory.
For a newcomers tournament the level of fives was outstanding and all those that participated have bright fives futures ahead. Congratulations to everyone who played!
A.Fitzpatrick & C.Lowe beat J.Frost & C.Hunter 12-10
T.Ford & A.Mistry beat A.Fitzpatrick & C.Lowe 12-3
S.Tuchel & E.Colinson beat G.Penny & J.Cunneen 12-0
S.Tuchel & E.Colinson beat T.Ford & A.Mistry 2-0 (9-7, 8-0)