The Veterans Squash Rackets Club of Great Britain

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GB Vets v Oxford University
1 Feb 2020

‘Oxit’ follows Brexit but better planned and no trade deals on lets or points!

Following leaving the EU a more important occasion arose on the following day, namely the GB Vets Touring Team match versus Oxford University held at Oxford’s very traditional squash club.

The comparative age ranges were an interesting arithmetical algorithm and if GB Vets certainly won on aggregate age unfortunately this apparent numerical advantage did not follow them on to court.

16 players lined up for each side and it was decided to play from the bottom of the order. As it started it was going slightly in GB Vets favour however after 8 matches it had ended in an honourable draw 4 matches each. Although all these matches were decided 3/0 there were some close fought individual games with the inevitable battle of age versus experience, a psychiatrist’s dream as it arrived at a balanced result.

Unfortunately, when we moved on to the top 8 this dream of the balance of mankind was shattered. The exception was a sterling performance from Allen Barwise winning 3/0, who also managed to avoid any photographic evidence of being there, something to do with his modelling agency contract apparently.

Oxford fielding their Varsity team in the top order won a decisive 7/1. There were some major scraps, Andy Murray, Mark Shildrake and Nigel Bacon for GB Vets playing enormous rallies against amazingly agile opponents, all the matches were keenly contested with a plethora of 12/10s and 11/9s but to no avail the top 8 went down 7/1.

The overall match score was then 11/5 in Oxford’s favour.

Matters took a turn for the better when a group of the Oxford team joined the GB Vets team for dinner and a few drinks somewhat later. Here in a more static environment the GB Vets team came to the fore. Student prowess at alcohol consumption was I believe eclipsed during the evening by the GB Vets during a convivial evening.

A few words of thanks, firstly to the organiser of the Oxford Team, Mike Sauvage and to Nick Sheppard the GB Vets Captain for arranging between them another spectacularly successful team match.

I think a special mention for Laura Nell the Oxford Captain for marking several games as well as winning a close match herself.

Probably most importantly to the Oxford Team of Students for joining in the spirit of the day with great enthusiasm.
A good day.

Robert Smith

Andy Murray (R) lost to Mandela Patrick 0-3 John Parkes (L) lost to James McCouat 0-3 Nigel Bacon (R) lost to Tom Trott 0-3 Mark Taylor (R) lost to Jon van der Kreek 0-3
Mark Shildrake (R) lost to Tim Delport 1-3 Geoff Redfern (L) lost to Zack Brubert 0-3 Ripley Oyler (R) lost to Laura Neill 1-3 Rachel Woolford (L) beat Alice Richards 3-0
Karen Hume (L) beat Ashira Mawji 3-1 Nick Sheppard (L) lost to Karthik Chakravarthy 0-3 Polly Woodward (R) lost to Mattie Hewlett 0-3 Dawn Robinson (L) lost to Maya Chatterjee 0-3
Keith Ragg (R) lost to Benedict Yorston 0-3 Alison Goy (L) beat Eve Shenkman 3-0