I 33 www.sport.ox.ac.ukreluctantly pulled out of the competition for this coming season. In January 2010 Nick Haydon (Univ) was elected Captain, with Karl Outen (SEH) as Team Secretary.The Blues will undertake a pre-season tour to Moscow in September, at the invitation of the Rugby Union of Russia. They will play two matches, one in Moscow and the other in Kazan, as they use this trip as the first stage of their preparations for the 129th Nomura Varsity Match on Thursday 9th December at Twickenham, KO 2.00pm.There have been many changes at OURFC since April. With Lord Butler standing down as President after 12 years in the position, Chairman Peter Bridges has now stepped up to be President with Ronnie Lamb, Blues Captain in 1964, being elected Chairman. After 14 years as the Club's Director of Rugby, Steve Hill moved on to take up a similar role at Richmond RFC, where he is already enjoying success and recruiting hard from former Oxford players! The Club has subsequently been restructured internally, with Tim Stevens becoming General Manager, former player Peter Wright coming in as Commercial Manager and Sally Wright continuing as Assistant Administrator.WOMEN'S RUGBYWe have enjoyed a successful season this year, with a top eight place finish in BUCS for the Blues, and a top four in the conference cup for the Panthers, our second team. Although both teams suffered losses in this year's Varsity Matches, the games were hard-fought and the standard of rugby was high. We also secured Nomura sponsorship for the VM! Our mid-season tour in January, which kicked off the new year and the eight week build-up to Varsity, brought us to Browns Sports Complex in Portugal. Back from tour, the Blues put together a string of wins to finish third in the BUCS South Premier league, and in the quarter-finals of the BUCS cup. Coaches Hugo Phillips' and Aled Lloyd Owen's hard work saw the Panthers reach the semifinal of the BUCS Conference Cup, and maintain their position in the Midlands Conference, remaining one of the highest university 2nds teams in the country. The Panthers played a very closely fought Varsity game, not conceding a try and managing to breach the Cambridge tryline themselves, but eventually lost with a score of 9-7. The Blues displayed a strong effort on Varsity day, though unfortunately Cambridge dominated, winning 25-0. The many spectators at Iffley Road enjoyed a high level of rugby, and a closer competition than the scoreline implies. Despite the great disappointment in losing Varsity, both teams played phenomenally well and grew as players as a result.As well as our Blues and Panthers teams, OUWRFC is committed to working hard to keep the level of College rugby high, and recruit new players to the game both at College and University level. Touch 7s in MT went very well as an introductory and recruitment session for the Club. Contact 7s was run as an introductory session in Hilary term, with much appreciated support of a number of OURFC players. The support of OURFC this season has been simply invaluable both on and off the pitch. We are very grateful for the continuing support of Tim Stevens, and we would also like to thank everyone involved in the arrangement of the Nomura sponsorship. Their sponsorship of the Varsity Match has really helped raise our Club profile both within and outside the University, as demonstrated by the number of people who came to watch the match. I am confident that this will lead to great benefits next year in recruiting new members. SHORINJI KEMPO2009-10 saw another good year for the Shorinji Kempo Club. Freshers' Fair saw a good intake of new members and the Club continued to welcome new trainees throughout Hilary and Trinity terms, which offset the normal drop-off in attendance by Freshers' recruits.2009-10 saw 16 Club members take grading examinations, with all Club members passing. Six students passed their 4th kyu (yellow belt) grading, seven students passed their 3rd kyu (green belt) grading, two students passed their 2nd kyu (blue belt) grading and one student passed their 1st kyu (brown belt) grading.February saw nine Club members attend the annual University Training Seminar, which was held in Bristol this year. Sensei Chris was part of a team of senior instructors who taught sessions on topics including randori and practical self-defence. The kenshi who attended benefitted greatly from the experience and it was a great opportunity to maintain links with other university clubs. Training with kenshi and instructors from other clubs is important as it ensures that the Club is exposed to fresh ideas about training methods and techniques. The Club intends to maintain its presence at this type of event in the future.SKI AND SNOWBOARDThroughout the year we have continued our effort to develop the Club and make skiing and snowboarding more accessible throughout the University. We have continued to see a strong increase in membership from freestylers, which is why we are offering weekly freestyle trips to the indoor Snow Dome in Milton Keynes, as well as the weekly race training sessions on the dry slope at Welwyn.In May the dry slope racing team finished fifth nationally in the Kings finals, which is a very impressive feat. This year we are planning to recreate the success of last year's joint racing and freestyle summer training in Les Deux Alpes. In December 2009 the Varsity Trip, jointly organised by the Oxford and Cambridge Ski and Snowboard Clubs, has seen yet another peak with over 2,500 students descending on Tignes. There was plenty of sunshine, snow and fresh powder on some days - making it perfect for the freestyle contingent. The racers made the most of the great conditions, with the Varsity Races taking place on Blues Tuesday. Oxford Men's Blues trailed after the Giant Slalom in the morning due to some unlucky falls, so despite very good performances in the following day's Slalom, the Oxford men were unable to close the margin and Cambridge won. The Women's Dark Blues, however, won by a larger margin than any other skiing Varsity win on record, to continue the series of victories they have had over the last few years. This rounded up a great Varsity Trip 2009. We are already looking forward to the Varsity Trip 2010, which will be held in Val Thorens this December. SQUASH2009-10 once again proved to be a fruitful year for OUSRC, with all teams experiencing highly successful seasons. The Men's Blues made the play-off finals of BUCS Division 1 Midlands Conference League after finishing second, but unfortunately lost to an exceptionally strong Loughborough team in play-offs. The Men's Second Team endured arguably the toughest start to the season, with Captain Joe Bartlett-Marques restructuring the squad, introducing a new system based around an internal fortnightly box league. The Squirrels were committed and hard-working and attained such a standard that they could play alongside Blues players in BUCS Division 1. The Squirrels concurrently competed in Division 2, where they finished fourth despite losing some close games. The Women's Blues Team won the National League, also competing in the Oxfordshire League, BUCS and Varsity. Unfortunately the team was relegated from the Oxfordshire League, although they are optimistic about attaining promotion next year. However, the team won the highly competitive South-East Regional Cup, hence qualifying for the National Finals. Disappointingly the Finals were scheduled on the same weekend as the BUCS tournament, forcing the team to withdraw. Thankfully, the team put this disappointment behind them to put in a strong showing at BUCS; coming second in their group and reaching the quarter-finals.The Club Annual Dinner was held at Vincent's Club and was held in honour of the Club's
34 I OXFORD UNIVERSITY I SPORTS REVIEW 2010 www.sport.ox.ac.uklong-time Senior Member and Treasurer, Mike Sauvage. In the Varsity Match the women managed to extend their unbeaten run with an extremely close 3-2 victory. The men, however, were once again undone in a 4-1 loss to a typically strong Cambridge side. The Squirrels reaped the rewards of the new system with a close 3-2 victory against a Cambridge team featuring tremendous strength in depth, a feature which proved the undoing of the third team in a 4-1 defeat.College squash was, as always, fiercely contested. Trinity claimed a convincing victory in the League with heavy wins over all other teams in the First Division. Cuppers was a tightly matched affair, in which Jesus College, boosted by several University Second Team players, won an extremely tight final against Balliol 3-2. The Club has continued to keep non-squad players across the University involved in the Box Leagues, where the standard has been impressively high. We also thank Mike Sauvage for his tremendous service to the Club. His successor, Nicholas King, is an experienced long-time member of the Club and will ensure that OUSRC continues to be run efficiently. SULKIDOOU Sul Ki Do had another highly successful Freshers' recruitment campaign in 2009 and this initial enthusiasm has translated into consistently high attendances throughout the year. With hard work on the part of both instructors and students, members at all levels have made rapid progress and the Club sent large groups to all three UK Sul Ki Do Federation gradings, with many positive responses from the examiners. OU Sul Ki Do also gained another black belt to add to our instructors' ranks, which, in addition to the large number of higher belts continuing in the Club, means we are in a very strong position. SURF2009/2010 has been a very successful year for the Surf Club. Three trips have been run to Newquay in Cornwall, each time greeted with sun and good surf. The first trip left in October to the BUCS Surfing Championships. Ten of us went down; four students entered the competition with, it is fair to say, varying degrees of success. Despite the time of year there was a sold 3ft swell and completely clear skies. Treasurer Olly Wright of Teddy Hall was the pick of the bunch, reaching the second round of the competition; the weekend was a resounding success! The next trip in early Hilary was for beginners only, and was also by all accounts a great trip, with several people getting up on a board for the first time. The final trip in Sixth Week of Hilary was very well attended, 16 of us booking out a lodge in Newquay for a weekend and tearing up some tidy 4ft surf.Considering the Surf Club runs on a minimal balance, the fact that we got three trips in this year is a great achievement. After some fairly successful negotiations with the Cambridge Surf Club, there may well be a Varsity surf trip at some point in the near future!SWIMMING2009-10 was a highly successful season for OUSC. Varsity success, in the form of the Men's and Overall trophies, was accompanied by our most successful BUCS campaign ever: winning the Southern Region qualifiers and finishing in an extraordinary place of fourth overall in the National Finals. The Men's Team, led by Ian Osband, was bolstered with the addition of US World Championship gold medallist (4x200 FS relay) Davis Tarwater, who was an amazing benefit to the team, not only through his performances, but through the experience of training with a swimmer of true world class. Even without Tarwater's presence the Men's Squad would have arguably been the strongest Varsity squad either Oxford or Cambridge have ever seen.Over the course of the season, University records in an unprecedented 12 of the 17 individual events were broken, many multiple times, with Tom Booth, James Soane, Will Allen-Mersh, Kouji Urata, Tom Close and Ian Osband all joining Tarwater in taking records during the year. Special mention must go to Jack Mariott for his astounding 54.60 100m Fly in the Varsity Match - a swim that narrowly missed Tarwater's record, and places him in the top ten British swimmers over the distance this year. The depth of the team was also apparent in the relay performances, where University and County records were broken in all four disciplines, with the 4x100 FS relay team of Joe Cruttwell, Close, Booth and Tarwater also picking up a gold at the County Championships.Captained by Ann Hyams, the Women's Team saw a good intake of talent. Fresher Katherine Rollins was quick to make her mark, taking the 200 Breaststroke record at the BUCS team event, following up with the 100 a few weeks later. German law student Nadja Danninger broke the 50 FS record early in the season, and her 100 in the Varsity Match saw her the first Oxford woman to swim under 59 seconds. Team Hero award must go to Clare Kane, who swam with a broken hip to pick up valuable points in the 200Fs in the BUCS team final.TABLE TENNISThe close of this sporting season marks another year of achievement for OUTTC. Over the past 24 months the results have been steadily improving, especially on the Womens' side; they achieved a first Varsity win in 20 years this season. This was in addition to another impressive performance in BUCS, being knocked out in the national quarter-finals by the eventual winners, Sheffield.Results have been slightly more disappointing on the Men's side; they suffered heavy defeats in the Varsity and Town vs. Gown matches. They also narrowly missed out on qualification for the play-offs in BUCS, with a last-minute defeat in the final match of the season. As a whole, the Club has grown over the last year, with an increase in the number of members, many of whom play regularly in the open practice sessions held twice a week. The squads on both the Men's and Women's side were also boosted by an influx of freshers, although the loss of several key players on both sides meant that the beginning of the season posed some difficulties initially. TAI CHIClasses were held on Monday evenings as in previous years, and were generally well attended. Beginners are always welcomed and catered for in the classes. Many of the exercises are carried out as a group, while for some the class is split into smaller groups according to experience.Freshers' Fair was our main source of recruitment, with some additional interest throughout the year coming via our website. We hope to develop the social side of the Club, which has had a lull this past year, but are otherwise happy with the running and atmosphere of the classes.TAEKWONDOOUTKD has had yet another successful year. During Michaelmas we gained our first ever sponsorship deal, with Choi & Kim Korean Law firm, for new Club kit. Hilary was Varsity term, and training heated up to six sessions a week. Varsity was held as part of the Varsity games weekend in Oxford and drew a substantial crowd. The matches were all well fought, and OUTKD won all shields (Men's/Women's/Overall) for the fourth year running. At least two new members join every week, and class participation is on the up. Members are competing in national competitions and are consistently bringing home medals to add to the collection.