2014 – 2015

Officers: Captains John Church, Mark Eastall

Queen’s College mixed tennis team had a good year, starting very well but sadly failing to build upon early successes. The first league fixture in the premier division was against the old rivals from St Edmund Hall. A strong team consisting of experienced players such as Mark Eastall and freshers such as Will Stone wasted little time despatching Queen’s neighbours. The 8-4 score flattered the opposition and put the team in a good position to push on for league success.

However, Cuppers was the next challenge. The previous year had seen an agonizing defeat to eventual winners Worcester in the semi-finals and the team was determined to make amends. A default by the opposition gave Queen’s a walkover in the first match against Corpus Christi, which led to a match against St Anne’s for a place in the quarter-finals. Since St Anne’s boasted two blues players, the team would have to be on excellent form to have a chance of progressing. Thankfully, that was the case, and after the first six rubbers the tie was evenly poised at three all. Some very solid doubles play from all three Queen’s pairs ensured a comfortable 6-3 victory. The next opponents, St John’s, boasted three blues players and the match was played in the scorching heat on St John’s grass. Thankfully Queen’s could call upon its women’s blues, Amy Partridge and Rebecca Bibb, to add a boost to an already strong side. The first round of matches saw Queen’s slip 1-2 behind. The St John’s 3rd pair provided no resistance and failed to win a game, but the 1st and 2nd pairs were evidently on form. The second round of matches followed a similar pattern, as the 3rd pair was comprehensively dismissed, but the 1st and 2nd pair came through tight sets, one of which went to a tie-break, to lead the tie 2-4. Queen’s needed to win all three of the remaining rubbers to win the tie, and started well as once again the St John’s 3rd pair were rapidly despatched. Bibb and Church had a close match against their opposite pair, the set going in serve until the ninth game, but sadly one break was enough for St John’s to seal the tie. The St John’s 1st pair won their remaining rubber to complete a 6-3 victory and brought a premature end to Queen’s Cuppers campaign.

This turned out to be the last match of the term as a mixture of injury, examinations, and opposition forfeitures resulted in an early close to the league season, with Queen’s comfortably securing a place in the premier division. The Club now says farewell to key players, Rebecca Bibb and Michael Pandya. Thankfully, most of the team will be back next year, hoping to do the College justice in Cuppers and make a strong push for the trophy.