Cambs Ist team went into the crunch match against Oxfordshire Ists needing to win to try and stay in the division. The reverse result of an 8–7 loss at home gave us hope. For once we took a couple of mens singles specialists, newcomer to the team Min Dabasinkas showed great determination but eventually lost 19-21, 21-19, 19-21 to Jack Smith. Tom Li brought up from the IInd team also making his debut showed his potential, but also lost 11-21, 18-21. Nat Taylor put in a great display beating Oxfordshire's number one singles player 21-16, 25-23 - a great result after losing to her at home. In the final singles, Olga Bryant won her first game 21-11, but her opponent started to play much better and eventually she lost in 3 ends.
This left us 3-1 down going into the doubles the same score as when we played them at home, Neil Place and Simon Woodhouse, went on against Oxford's first pair and struggled to get into the game, losing 14-21, 13-21. Sam Scharf and Dan Bates, showed fight and determination but eventually lost 15-21, 18-21. The Ladies didn’t fair much better with Nat Taylor and Sara Mason losing a close first end 20-22, and then struggling in the second end losing 10-21. In the final doubles, Olga Bryant and Hannah Sharman had a long battle with Oxford's 2nd pair but eventually lost 19-21, 15-21.
This left us 7-1 down going into the reverse doubles. After a brief 'we can still win this' speech by Sam, we went in with renewed determination. Neil and Simon fought through a tough first game to win 21-17, completely lost concentration in the second and lost 7-21, however recovered and won in three to a final score of 21-16. Dan and Sam showed equal determination losing the first end 16-21, fighting back to win the second 23-21, but unfortunately losing the 3rd game 11-21. The ladies showed equal grit and determination with Nat and Sara showing their class by winning 21-17, 21-16. Unfortunately Olga and Hannah faced an uphill battle against Oxford’s 1st’s and lost against high class opponents 12-21, 16-21.
This meant to get a point we needed all 3 mixed games to go our way. First victory came from the 3rd pair of Sara and Neil who comfortably won 21-12, 21-7. Second game off was the new 1st pair of Sam and Nat, who unfortunately couldn’t overcome a strong Oxford 1st pair losing 13-21, 16-21. This left second new pair of Simon and Olga fighting in a epic game which they eventually won 21-19, 19-21, 21-19.
This means we now need to win our next 2 games 10-5 or better to stay in the division, Bring on Herts.
Neil Place - Captain
More information about results of the Cambs I team is available on the Team Page.