Varsity 2019 report
Tuesday, 02 April 2019
This past weekend saw the culmination of the 8th annual Varsity between Oxford Brookes University and the University of Reading. While the overall scoreline between the two rival institutions was currently 5-2 to Brookes, the past two Varsity competitions have both gone to Reading.
The action officially started on Wednesday 20th, with Brookes travelling to the Royal Berkshire Polo Club for an early match up which saw #TEAMBrookes take the lead in the competition. The following Wednesday saw our equestrian team put in a valiant effort, but ultimately came up short as Reading leveled the scores before Futsal and Cricket had their turn in the spotlight.
Our Futsal team put in a worldy, finishing off their fixture with a winning scoreline of 25-4, before both the 1st and 2nd Cricket teams also picked up wins to round out the evening. #TEAMBrookes took a 4-1 lead going into the Big Saturday of action.
Alongside our colleagues from Reading, we had come up with a prediction for the overall result. With 55 fixtures to be played in total that prediction came out 28-27 in favour of the Reading Knights so it was clear that the competition would be close and that #TEAMBrookes would need to fire on all cylinders if there was to be any hope of reclaiming the Varsity crown that has been held by Reading since 2017.
The action on Saturday kicked off with our Netball 2nd team taking to the court at Headington with an early start at 9:30am. An impressive crowd had already gathered and it was clear that Brookes were up for the challenge. An incredible finish to the match saw our side, who had trailed the whole game, down by 2 with around 20 seconds remaining. Brookes quickly managed to bring it back to a 1 point deficit, then a turnover and a flurry of action led to the ball bouncing around the rim and dropping through the net as the final buzzer went with the crowd erupting as Brookes leveled the match in dramatic fashion.
The day continued to provide some exceptional action across all of the fixtures. Victories for our two Varsity captains, Alice Bates in the Women’s football, who won 9-0, and Angus Johnson in the Men’s Rugby Union 1st who took victory by a score of 14-12, added to wins across the board as the results started to flood in.
Our Rugby League fixture on Cheney field drew a huge crowd, while Oxford Rugby Club hosted a full complement of fixtures. Harcourt Hill hosted Football, Lacrosse and American Football, while we had match ups in Fencing, Table Tennis, Basketball and too many more sports to mention!
The final fixture of the day saw our Women’s 1st team take to the field against their Reading counterparts, picking up another comprehensive win.
There was a sense of inevitability ahead of the official results announcement. We had promised that Varsity was coming home.
The winners, by a score of 37.5 to 17.5... And Varsity 2019 Champions... OXFORD BROOKES UNIVERSITY!
Varsity came home.
#TEAMBrookes 6 – 2 Reading Knights
Brookes Sport would like to offer our heartfelt thanks and appreciation to everyone who took part in making the event what it was – from the participants on the day, to the spectators and fans, and the staff on duty who really had their work cut out for them. This Varsity was bigger and better than any Varsity that has come before it, with more fixtures, more anticipation, more hype, and even better weather than ever before!
Varsity will return in 2020 when Reading take their turn to host, before coming back to Brookes in 2021. We hope to see you there!