29 Oct 2023
Sports Report – Short Half 2023, Week 5

Sports Report – Short Half 2023, Week 5

Tuesday 10th October 2023

Basketball v Marlborough College (h):

This was always going to be a tough game. The Winchester 1st team had not been able to train together and were unprepared, and LNT decided to play as many people as possible. Marlborough have a strong and talented centre and while Winchester worked hard and improved, his presence was ultimately the difference. Hopefully the team will have learnt a lot, and this game should help underline the importance of proper organisation and preparation. It will be interesting to see how these two teams match up again later in the year. Lost 29-51 [LNT]

The U16s started nervously, making daft mistakes and poor decisions. Marlborough took the lead early on and, despite occasional highlights from Winchester, looked like they might pull away to an easy win. In the second half though, Winchester settled down, upped the intensity on defence and started to create and put away easy points. Once the lead was taken, the gap in scores grew quickly so that the final score showed a comfortable Winchester victory. There is much to work on in the coming weeks, but this group of players once again showed that they have the potential to be a strong side. Won 45-37 [LNT]

Football: ISFA U18 Cup 2nd Round v Trinity School (h)

Soccer XI welcomed Trinity School, Croydon to a perfect Doggers pitch this Tuesday afternoon. After a video and discussion session regarding our previous game I was hoping for a reaction and we were not disappointed. Two evenly matched teams looked for the breakthrough but we have to give both sides credit for their defensive display. Few chances were created but both keepers were up for the challenge and produced a couple of great saves. 0 - 0 at full time meant two 10 minute halves of extra time and still the score was even, meaning penalties. Both teams showed no nerves as Winchester WON 12 - 11 with every player scoring a penalty!! Anthony Cloke-Brown made the match winning save to send the boys boys running around the pitch celebrating with lots of spectators who had stayed after their sessions to cheer us over the line. Great win for the boys and we await our opponents in the next round. [JRD]

Yearlings B v Bedales School: (a) Won 3-1

So many players had their best performance so far this year and the team are gelling nicely. Cem was quite frankly unplayable in the first half and Yourui showed a deft touch and silky skills, along with a desire to retrieve the ball when we lost it. Hector was an unstoppable wall in defence. [PAH]

Rackets v Tonbridge School (h)

This was a competitive fixture overall ending with the spoils being shared. Jamie Mitchell (G) and Will Hammerson-Jones (A) were first on and although they lost game 1, managed to re-group and take the next 3. Our second Sen Colts pair, Seb Kingsbury (A) and Pran Busrapan (D) - a new partnership this season, performed well together and, despite losing the second game decisively, also managed a 3- 1 win. JCA, Oscar O-Carroll (I) and Dima Kasumov (I) found themselves in a nail-biting struggle against a highly-regarded opposition. This match went to the full 5 games where, despite fighting impressively, Winchester narrowly lost. JCB, John Langdon (K) and Thai Leetrakul (C) - another newly formed pair, played well at times but could not manage a win.

This left the senior pairs: Stephen Lam (F) and Jack Bristowe (A), the latter coming straight from a long, closely-fought football match, gave their all but didn’t quite manage to take the match to the opposition. First Pair, Bertie Vallat (F) and Henry Nicholls (A) (who had also been involved in the same football match) bagged the first 2 games with ease. However, Tonbridge fought back and game 3 went to 14 - l4 where Winchester managed to efficiently take the game and the victory. [TERC]

Thursday 12th October 2023

Badminton 1st v Harrow School (a): Lost 5-10

Our top 8 badminton players made the long journey to Harrow. Unfortunately, we lost to a score of 10-5, with the last set of Winchester’s first pair against Harrow’s own first sadly having to end in a draw, being cut short by time constraints. It was a difficult game, and all pairs put on a good show despite the loss, with each player trying to adapt to the different plastic shuttles Harrow used. The man of the match goes to Benjamin Wen, who valiantly continued to play on after suffering two unlucky friendly-fire racket-induced injuries to the head and back courtesy of teammate Yuyao Xie. [Alvin Yu (I)]

Fencing Mixed U18A v Westminster School (a):

Three tight losses on the pistes to Westminster School will be a spur to greater efforts, and some fine individual performances with a warm welcome made for a relatively happy - if long - return journey for our Sabreurs, Epeists and Fleurettistes on Thursday:

Epee: Westminster School 45 37 Winchester College

Sabre: Westminster School 45 40 Winchester College

Foil: Westminster School 45 38 Winchester College

Football v Bedales & King’s Winchester

The Sen Colts Bs came into this match on a high having comfortably eased past Lord Wandsworth College last week. However, with a few of our players having been lost to the A’s, our team was somewhat cobbled together. We started brightly creating various good chances on goal though could not provide the finishing touch and soon Bedales capitalised on this and put one past us. This seemed to open the gates and they scored four more in relatively quick succession which left us 5-0 down at half-time, not looking good. Nevertheless, in the second half, following an inspired team talk by Dr McManus we became much more compact in defence, led by Freddie Spearing (I) and Sam Hawkins (K). This enabled us to be more aggressive at the other end of the pitch and eventually resulted in a scrappy but well taken goal by Alberto Gianni Garcia (B) following a goal-keeper blunder. We weren’t able to add to this but neither were the opposition and so the game finished 5-1 to Bedales. (Stanley Askew, K)

King’s Winchester (h):

An intense SCAs put the hammer down against King’s. Goals for all the front three, Michael Jin pulling the strings in midfield and capping his performance with a goal, and a hard-working debut from Tom Gordon made it a day to remember on Hock. MoM: Chiang for a well-taken hattrick.W8-1 [RJHM]

Falling behind early in this game against King’s came as a surprise but acted as a good wake up call for the Yearlings A. As we started to play well in possession, chances soon came as we looked to thread passes between defenders on the slick surface. Odogwu had a great early chance which was saved and we continued to build pressure and draw saves from the Kings' keeper. As the gathering support grew louder, Husband lined up a free kick from the sort of distance where you are not sure whether to shoot or drift in a cross, his shot hit the wall and rebounded towards Hoskin, lurking in midfield. James never took his eyes off the ball as it dropped and connected sweetly with his left-foot volley from 25 yards, which dipped perfectly under the bar and into the top right corner of the goal. The crowd went wild as Hoskin and the team celebrated his sensational strike. We were dealing well with Kings' attacks now, with debutants Pritchard and McGregor impressing with their calmness in possession and decision making in defence. We continued to create chances and a snap shot from Duckworth brought about a save that deflected to Odogwu who stroked home from close range to give us the edge at half time.

Following Mr Flynn's encouraging words, the team moved the ball around the field quickly and with confidence, looking to attack down both flanks. Then Husband and Hunt linked up well on the right before Hunt played Aighe through, who powered towards goal before finishing at the near post. Hunt then hit the woodwork, which would prove to have the better of us twice more as we sought more goals. With a more comfortable lead, a few players decided to seek their own rewards which distracted us away from the overall performance and we then conceded with 15 minutes to play. Renewed efforts, however, saw Irvine run cleverly in behind only to see his effort strike the post, before Husband headed a late corner onto the near post as well. We finished with the win and a strong performance for much of the game, whilst also knowing that the score-line might have looked very different had we been more clinical and selfless in and around the Kings' penalty area.W3-2 [JMB]

Golf 1st v LeAF Studio (h)

A gloomy Thursday afternoon saw our HMC foursomes team play their first match of the season against LeAF Studio - Bournemouth, at Hockley Golf club. Seeded first was Seb Wells (G) and Isaac Haines (I), looking to get off to a strong start. Both players worked well as a team and played some solid golf and used the weather and the opponents' lack of course knowledge to get a small lead of 1 up through 8 holes. Isaac and Seb then managed to show their experience as a pair to win the next 5 holes and win 6&5 leading to an important point for the team against a very strong Bournemouth pair. The second pair was Ray Sanmathy (E) and James Redfern (A). After a promising practice match on Tuesday, both boys reassured the rest of the team that they were capable of taking down any opponent they face. Throughout their match, Ray and James demonstrated the importance of a solid long game and a great short game to wear down their opponents. A strong start and great composure, meant the pair shook hands on the 12th green, winning with an impressive 8&6. Out last was our JP man Harry Ho (I) and Taanvir Sood (X), looking to win their match to secure a 3-0 win. The pair did just this by displaying some great teamwork and really strategic golf, which was important given the weather conditions. The pair never looked in doubt, winning 5 holes in a row early on, providing both other pairs out ahead on the course with heaps of confidence. The pair also shook hands on the 12th green, winning 7&6, resulting in the team winning their first match in the HMC in convincing style. (Isaac Haines, I)

Squash v Wellington College (h):

1st: Won 5-0 U16A: Won 5-0

Saturday 14th October 2023

Football v Gordon’s School, Bradfield College, Wellington College, Lord Wandsworth College

Winchester 1st XI welcomed Gordon’s to Doggers to what we knew was going to be a tough game. We wanted a fast start and were rewarded with an early goal from Timothy Oluwabusola after Alex Claisse cleared the ball long and Timothy nipped in between defenders and keeper to head into the empty net. We were unable to hold on for long and conceded from a corner which we didn't deal with and got punished. Shortly after Timothy again worked hard and chased the keeper down and forced him into clearing straight at him and got the rebound into the net. We were looking for composure and to get to half time in the lead but Gordon’s pushed for an equaliser and were rewarded just before half time to end the half 2-2.

The 2nd Half was very tight and both teams looked to get the winner but defensives stood strong until the last minute when Nasir Ogunmola won a the ball with a great challenge and then put Timothy over the top, He had lots to do but cut inside and around Gordon’s defenders to slip the ball into the bottom right corner to win the game. 2M mentioned it was a mishit but cheered the goal anyway!! A draw was probably a fair result but the boys dug deep and got over the line. Well done boys, proud of you guys today. W3-2 (JRD)

On a cold Saturday afternoon the Winchester College 2nd XI took on Gordon’s at home. We started off well, creating numerous chances and shots on goal.  It was some of the best football we had played all year. yet we were plagued with the same problem we had suffered all year- a lack of killer instinct in the final third. Unfortunately, it was Gordon’s who struck first, capitalising on our sloppiness from a throw-in, with a great shot from about 30 yards into the top corner the result!

 However, we kept our heads up, trying again and again to dominate the ball for most of the game with the occasional threat from Gordon’s. Our sustained pressure was eventually  rewarded towards the tail end of the game when Dom Jackson (A) finished inside the 6-yard box from a keeper spill and, in the dying moments of the game a ball over the top from Bosco Oficialdegui (G) met the boot of Charlie Barklam (A) who rifled it into the bottom right corner to win us the game. In the end it was a hard fought and well-earned victory. W2-1[Jidechi Ohakosim (G)]

After a disappointing game against Lancing, the 3s were on fire this week. The 1-0 victory does not hint at the dominance they showed during long periods of the game. Gordon’s are a very decent side with strong players who could have caused many problems, but on this day the Winchester 3rd XI's organisation, energy and teamwork was too much; only the crossbar, goalpost and determined defending kept Gordon’s in the game. Despite a couple of heart-stopping goalmouth moments in the closing minutes, the 3rd XI were deserved victors. [LNT]

V Bradfield College (h)

4th XI v 5th XI: Won 2-1 5th XI v 6th XI: Lost 2-3 6th XI v 7th XI: Won 3-1

The mighty 7th XI hiked the great distance to Palmer 3 in order to face Bradfield 8th XI. A team who have previously never beaten us with a margin less than 8. It was however, a different story on Palmer 3. Some robust challenges and audacious long shots exemplified the spirit of the team. A solid defensive display from Baxendale (G) and Xu (X) kept the first half scoreless. The second half started positively until a cheap goal against the flow of play was scored by Bradfield. The 7thscouldn’t ignite their attacking spark with a number of chances going begging. L, 1-0. [BHGC]

In a game which the SCC knew would be tough against Bradfield the target was to keep things simple and limit their chances. We did this well for the first ten minutes, with the defence doing a solid job marshalled by Luke Edwards (K), and the attack looking threatening on the break. Unfortunately, Bradfield then opened the scoring with a free kick from range into the top corner. They then stepped up a few gears and their better quality showed, with multiple goals in quick succession putting us 5-0 down at half time in a somewhat aggressive encounter.

We were disappointed but looked to compete more in the second half. We managed to do this, particularly in midfield, with Hugo Brett (I) fighting particularly hard and winning us more possession. Unfortunately, despite a valiant performance in the second half where we didn’t concede, the game started to turn sour with some of the Bradfield players putting in some horrible challenges and regularly targeting our bodies rather than the ball. The game ended 5-0 to Bradfield but we showed promise in the second half, and we will look to revenge the result when we play them away after half term. (W Hagger, D)

On Saturday the Sen Colt Ds played Bradfield. With Aarav Sharma (I) as the skipper, we prepared for an intense match. The game started off with a cracking goal from Kentaro Tada (H) who scored with much style. Archie Lawson (I) took up the challenge of goalkeeper for the match and made giant saves. But unfortunately the opposition got the better of us, leading to a few goals.

In the second half, Theo Munaretto-Day (F) went up to the right wing, and with the help of Tom Simpson (A) and Pholnart Suksriwong (H) tried to score a second goal but sadly to no avail. The Bradfield side unfortunately had a physical advantage compared to us and used that to score a couple more goals. Thank you to everyone who played and for such a great turnout as they all put in a lot of passion into their play, despite the final result. L: 1-13 (Aarav Sharma, I) and Jack Dalrymple, C)

Jun Colts D: Lost 1-3

A wonderful win for the Jun Colts E this Saturday, with Deniz Mucen at the helm. The team applied considerable pressure to the Bradfield defence in the first half, scoring from a deft corner near the middle of the first half. Good fortune was on their side again later in the half, another ball sneaking its way over the goal line from a crowded box. Bradfield rallied well in the second half, but, despite many set pieces near the Winchester goal, no goals were conceded and the team were able to close the game with a convincing victory. W3-0 (TP)

A promising and energetic start for the Yearlings D team with confidence riding high from their 4-0 victory last weekend at Lancing. Play went back and forth with opportunities for both sides. The midfield battle was where most of the play occurred. Bradfield scored first to lead 1-0 at half time. Some important saves by Casper in goal but the goalmouth was overwhelmed and Bradfield scored a second. This was the score line it was to end on. Many energetic performances and many players keen to avenge this defeat in the away match early next month. [PM]

The exciting and even match between Winchester Yearlings E and the Bradfield U14F started off strong, with a motivated Winchester team attacking and breaking the deadlock early in the first half, thanks to an excellent out-of-the-box rocket by Xavier (C). This helped relieve the early Bradfield pressure and Winchester ended the half clearly on top. Emboldened by their end to the first half, Winchester kept their positive attacking play going, dominating the field, and securing two further goals: a clinical finish by Jentin (H), a crowning moment for his E team debut, and a goal from another Cookite, George to kill off the game. The incredible composure of our goalie Nigel – as well as the omnipresent hand of Fate – kept Winchester nerves at ease, resulting in a comfortable 3-0 result. The team was cohesive, positive, and enthusiastic, which made our overwhelming victory all the better. [LGS]

The JCCs played a strong Lord Wandsworth College A team. We started the game with great intensity and strong pressure which soon resulted in a goal from Caspar Edwards (A) as the keeper scuffed a goal kick. Shortly after, some poor defensive work lead to an equaliser for Lord Wandsworth. An inspirational talk at halftime from Holly Wang (I) and a great cross from Monty Weaver (K) meant Caspar scored another, we kept fighting with great saves from Tom Howard (E), strong challenges from Ernest Di Maria (C), before Caspar completed his hattrick. In the final fifteen minutes we kept pushing before they scored one more before the final whistle blew ending in a 3-2 win for Winchester. Notable mentions go to Aaron Mann (H) and Samuel Du Ry (G). Match report written by Caspar Edwards (A). [JWS]

V Wellington College (a):

Pre-match preparation for the SCAs was far from ideal for the visit to Wellington. Caretaker manager Mr Burley was drafted in to cover for Mr Mercer who, despite being away on a scouting mission, had provided suitably sophisticated tactical instruction for the boys to keep things simple and move the ball quickly. A 2.20pm arrival for a 2.30pm kick off meant a late request to push back the start time and after a hurried warm up the boys were raring to go.

Understandably, the start was tentative and the SCAs were guilty of holding onto the ball a little too long which allowed Wellington to disrupt some of the passing movements. The host's goalkeeper was also the source of most of their attacks and the bouncing through ball went close a couple of times to give Theo Coles a bit of a scare. Nevertheless, most of the clear cut attacking chances were created by the boys from Winch. Jason Chiang forced the keeper into two good saves, a goalmouth melee almost led to an opener and Rocket sent a name-sake shot towards the corner that the keeper also saved. 0-0 at half time was not a just reward for the SCAs efforts but with a more clinical approach all felt the win was there for the taking.

Chiang went close again early in the second half as did Seb Kingsbury from a corner but then a fast counter-attack from the boys in white saw Jason cut in from the left to curl a low shot into the bottom corner to take the lead. Soon after the lead was doubled. A delightful cross field diagonal from Kennedy found Isaac Claisse wide right who finished with aplomb, side-footing a volley over the keeper's head. The defenders kept things secure at the back with the two Arthurs nullifying anything through the middle and Sasha and Henri securing the flanks. Chiang was making hay down the left and from his cross the ball rebounded out close to the penalty spot where Micheal Jin pounced to slot the ball home. As time pushed on Hampel and Kennedy rose like majestic salmon trying to meet a well delivered corner but unfortunately neither was able to connect. However, they did enough to force a Welly defender into conceding an OG and the game finished 4-0. This capped off a positive week for the Senior Colts and it is important the boys ensure they put in some quality fitness work over Leave Out so they return ready for the final stretch of games, including big ones against Charterhouse and Bradfield. (MSB)

The JCAs took to the further reaches of Wellington’s pitches to face their opposition today. We started well but against the run of play, we conceded a penalty after skipper Seb Browning (G) rushed out of goal to meet the presumed offside Wellington striker and performed a slightly dubious tackle on the edge of the D. The striker then perfectly executed a textbook long jump to carry himself into the box, an unusual sight as athletics season is still two terms away. The penalty was given by the referee and the Wellingtonian stepped up and slotted into the bottom right hand corner, evading the reaching right hand of Seb for 1-0. This early goal did not damage Winchester spirits however and the relentless press (led by Gabriel Oluwabusola (B) resulted in a loose ball on the edge of the 18 yard picked up by Jesse Feyita (C) who drove to the middle of the goal and slotted the ball into the bottom left corner with his weak foot. (1-1) The press continued and with it came more opportunities as the JCAs realised that pressing is indeed effective! The Wellington defence struggled to deal with this intensity and Freddy Laarman (C) capitalised on a defensive error and slotted for 2-1. The work rate did not falter and we looked to craft more opportunities but we could not increase our advantage before half time, despite many clear attempts.

We kicked off and swiftly had the ball back in our possession where our midfield maestro Gio Santagati (D) played a wonderfully weighted ball to Mike MacCabe (A) who was then poorly tackled in the box. Advantage was played as our diminutive Dirk Kuyt picked himself up and found himself on the ball again, unleashing a powerful shot onto the post. There was confusion among the boys as the ref had not blown the whistle to bring back for a penalty but instead had played advantage and signalled for a goal kick. Spurred on by this we used the wide areas to our advantage and won a free kick. James Redfern (A) stood up to take it. The ball was whipped in and wonderfully met by the head of Jesse Feyita with aerial prowess that Peter Crouch would be proud of. (3-1) Reminiscent of a prime Johan Cruyff, Freddy Laarman beat 2 men out wide then drove to the centre of the box and unleashed a deadly shot that caught a nasty deflection but was still set to land itself in the back of the net. This was until Gabriel Oluwabusola (B) tapped the ball in for ‘security’ from an offside position and the ball was placed down for a Wellington freekick.

Determined to make sure we weren’t pegged back, James carved through the Wellington defence, sending three men to early match tea before striking with venom into the bottom left corner - though the goal was nearly not given due to it sneaking through a hole in the net! (4-1). Mood was high but we weren’t done there. Some great work out wide from Prince Gbedawo (D) allowed him to play Gabriel through on goal where he, instead of shooting early and run the risk of the keeper still being in the goal, decided to round him and deflected the ball into the goal via the thigh of a sliding Wellington defender. (5-1) We came sprinting out of the blocks yet again after the Wellington kick off and won the ball again. A cross was played into a crowded box and the dropping ball fell to captain Seb Browning who had been unleashed upon the Wellington defence. A touch to set himself was followed by a tidy finish for our sixth of the day. (6-1 FT)

Class and composure were personified during this fixture, with Ned Reeve (B) having his best game in the white of Winchester College. Our last game before leave out gives us much to think about before our ISFA cup fixture against Charterhouse. (Seb Browning, G)

Having spent an hour working on finishing drills the evening before the game, when the Yearlings As hit the woodwork twice in the opening stages of the game our travelling fans might have questioned our methods. Fortunately, we were to find creating chances easy on this occasion and Shivji eventually converted one of the many he and Odogwu were presented with in the opening quarter. As five substitutes entered the game at the quarter-mark, we became more productive in front of goal. Irvine netted a 9-minute hat-trick from customary close range, one from a saved Shivji shot and two from assists by the increasingly team-focused Aighe. Aighe had also scored his first via a through ball from Husband, who then turned scorer himself after linking up just outside the box with Radcliffe before placing his left-footed effort into the bottom corner.

Despite five more changes at half time our midfield remained busy and able to regain possession well before making good use of the size of the Wellington 1st XI pitch to put forwards into space behind the Wellington back four. Catsaras and Hunt both provided for Aighe and Pritchard respectively. We also sought to push our fullbacks higher in the second half, with Lau and Hoskin venturing into the opposition box more often. Whilst we didn't make the most of every chance we made on the day, Wellington made the most of a rare foray into our territory, following some generous school-mastering from the official, and beat Hawthorne with a drive into the far corner. Aighe took it upon himself to write this wrong by running 60 yards with the ball and finishing smartly for his own hat-trick. Numerous further changes ensued before Catsaras got himself on the scoresheet and then Odogwu added a brace in the closing stages. This was a friendly way to finish the team's first half of term at Winchester and sterner tests await when we return. W12-1 [JMB]

All fixtures details can be found on: https://sportsfixtures.winchestercollege.org/

Sporting quote for the week:

“If you do the bare minimum, expect bare minimum results. If you want to be great, work to be great. Nothing just happens.” JJ Watt, Former NFL player

M.S. Burley

Director of Sport

17th October 2023

Twitter: @WinCollSports