28 Feb 2024
Sports Report – Common Time 2024, Week 7

Sports Report – Common Time 2024, Week 7

Tuesday 19th February 2024

Golf U16 v Eton (h)

It was a rough start for the first pair, Orca and Edward F, who immediately went 1 down on the first hole. The opposition played solid golf all game long and the Winchester pair struggled to catch up, but did eventually manage to get even again on the fourth hole after a solid par from Orca. The Wykehamists even managed to go 1 up at one point on the fifth hole after a stunning putt from Edward. The solid golf continued from both sides, but the Eton side played better and more consistently, leading to a crushing loss of 2 down.

It was Bryan L on debut, partnered with Nigel C, going up against the Eton second pair. Both Nigel and Bryan played solid, consistent golf throughout the round going 3 up with 4 to play. However, disaster struck as they went on to lose all 4 remaining holes for a resulting 1 down loss. A disappointing but valiant defeat.

The third pair, Phoom K and Adwit Sstruggled to match the Eton third pair who were playing excellent golf. Playing against strong-handicapped and experienced players, Winchester's young guns met their match. Having fallen behind early on, they were unfortunately unable to turn the tide, ending 4 down. (Orca C-I, F)

Hockey v KES Witley

The U15A’s travelled to KES Witley to take on their U15A’s. The game began on level terms with both teams moving the ball around nicely and adjusting to playing conditions well. For the last 20 minutes of the first half, KES Witley dominated with the ball finding the strikers and wingers up front often within our defensive twenty-three line. This proved to be tough work for our defenders as they exposed weaknesses, often on the left-hand side of the pitch and neatly slotted away 4 goals within the first half to leave it 4-0 at the end of 30 minutes.

After some encouraging words from Mr Flynn and Miss Bonham Winchester came out fighting with determination and grit. Edwards, Lewis, Hawkins and Mannion-Miles all making shifts to play more up field and pile pressure back on the KES defensive line. Neat first goals from Hawkins and Mannion-Miles found the bottom corner to bring the game to 4-2 with 15 mins to play. Momentum seemed to be swinging Winchester’s way when a quick counterattack from KES took the score to 5-2.

A fantastic long ball from Lewis gave Edwards the opportunity to open up his scoring account for the year with a neat tap in at the near post to make the score 5-3. This followed in succession with Hawkins scoring a neat drag flick off a short corner to put pressure on KES making the score 5-4 with 5 minutes to go. Unfortunately, it wasn’t meant to be as KES slotted another goal in a thriller to give them a 6-4 win.

U14A D0-0

Thur 21st 2024

Swimming: Tonbridge Trophy (a)

It was our first time being invited to the Tonbridge Trophy, the highest profile meet we have ever attended, bar the national competition, Bath Cup (Friday 1st of March). Out of the 12 teams there, big names in swimming like Harrow, Reed's School, Whitgift, and Sevenoaks were common.

It was already due to be a one hour and forty minute drive to Tonbridge, but the heavy rain, torrential flooding, and dawdling traffic made that journey over two hours long. Twenty minutes late to the start of the gala, we missed the warm-up and first two races. Entering the pool area, there was an air of elite racing, one that school swim teams often do not get to experience. Everyone wore tech suits. There was a clear contrast between the opposition, half of which were national swimmers, and us, who were not even warm. Despite trying our best, the highest place we reached was second.

In the end, it was not a bad experience, although we did break our win streak this year. Our swimmers have now personally perceived what their future targets look like. However, for some of them, I must say that the highlight of their day was stopping at a service station during a two-and-a-half-hour bus ride. (M. Yan, I)

Badminton v Harrow (h)

On Thursday, Winchester's first VIII arrived at Bar End to play against Harrow. After a close and action-packed match, Winchester pulled out an unprecedented win, with a phenomenal result of 6-2. All four Winchester pairs played at a very consistent high standard and many fought hard over the final points of three-set games, which the 6-2 score does not reveal. Under this pressure, our players adapted well and did not buckle. In particular, Bryan H from third pair coped with the pressure much better and more consistently than usual, and well deserves the place of Man of the Match. If he can replicate this performance in future matches, he will have demonstrated remarkable growth as a player throughout this year. (A. Yu, I)

Squash v Bryanston (h)

On Thursday 22 February, Winchester's Sen X played against Bryanston. First to play were the 2nd V, with great wins from Fabian WP (D), John L (K), and Fergus T (B). Max DV (B) and Noah H (D) had well-fought matches that lasted over 30 minutes, showing their improved stamina. However, their opponent's technique gave Bryanston the upper hand. They showed great sportsmanship by staying behind and spectating the other matches. Final score: Win 3-2

The 1st V was short on players, so Matthew L (H) and Freddie S (I) stepped up to the occasion. Freddie, playing at 5th string, overwhelmed his opponent with his quick footwork. Matthew, on the other hand, used his superior drops and lobs to make his opponent run. Third string Will G (I) used his physicality and durability to outlast his opponent, with great improvements on his backhand. Brian C (C) played to his usual impeccable standard, using his accurate backhand to drive the ball into the back corners and from time to time, dropping the ball into the front wall. First string Felix C (E) started 2-0 down in games, but despite this, he showed great resilience in his next to games. Felix managed to give himself more time against his much larger and stronger opponent by using more height on his shots. Unfortunately, after his brilliant comeback to tie the score at 2-2, he unluckily lost his last game to Bryanston. Final. These are very promising scores as we look towards playing our final match of the season against Eton. (Brian Chan, C). Win 4-1

Winchester Football: XVs

XVs this year had all of the ingredients for an epic contest; the OTH side contained many of the best footballers in the school and was seasoned with plenty who had tasted victory in the demolition of Commoners in 2023. For their part, Commoners were desperate to avenge that defeat.

OTH went into the match supremely confident after a thumping win over College in Xs and Commoners picking six Third Years which suggested that they did not have enough strength in the senior years - there was talk of record scores and a three digit win. It came as a rude awakening then, when Commoners went ahead early in the game and a planted goal saw them pull away in the first half. OTH responded positively and closed the gap, eventually finishing the first half ahead, but only by the skin of their teeth to lead 18-17 at time-to-change.

Dominating the hot, Commoners gathered themselves and literally pushed back in front early in the second half, stretching their lead to 8 points and with seven minutes to go, it looked as though Commoners would get their win - the Commoners crowd was in fine voice - OTH silent. However, Houses showed that they were made of sterner stuff and capitalised on a flurry of Commoner mistakes to score a pair of fine goals, closing the gap and then establishing a lead of their own. With time running out, Commoners came back with a behind and conversion to reduce the deficit to a single score. Sensing that victory was still possible, they pressed for that final goal in the final seconds, but Houses defended brilliantly to end the match 43-41 winners.

The 2024 XVs had lived up to its billing, being the finest game of Winchester Football that many could remember - plenty of spectators who had not watched a full game before found it impossible to tear themselves away. Houses absolutely deserved their win, but Commoners took them down to the wire and with so many Third Years in their side, showed what might be coming in 2025. (MR)

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

Sporting quote for the week:

Success is peace of mind, which is a direct result of knowing you did your best to become the best that you are capable of being. (John Wooden, Former UCLA men’s Basketball Coach)

M.S. Burley

Director of Sport

27th February 2024

X: @WinCollSports