Blue bows best

Chris Cowburn

Cambridge 3032 - Oxford 3003

With an impressive third place in this year's BUSA indoor championships, Oxford seemed to have a strong chance of finally regaining the coveted Varsity Rose Bowl. Potentially high-scoring team members such as Ben Huckvale, winner of a BUSA bronze medal, indicated that victory was by no means assured, and it would have been unwise to bet on a repeat of last year's 500-point trouncing of Oxford.

The afternoon's predicted wind speed of 4mph was woefully short of the mark, strong gusts and an infuriating drizzle made the conditions difficult. Unfortunately for the visitors, attending a university in a relatively mountainous part of the country such as Oxford meant practice in such conditions was rarely undertaken. Even so it was some time after the final three whistles that the result was known, with the top four Cambridge scores giving victory for the fifth year running by a slender margin of 29 points.

Captain Omar Al-Mushadani led the team with 760, and old hand James Pawley made 759. New half-blues Matt Monaghan (759) and Chris Cowburn (754) completed the line-up and gave a more consistent team performance than Oxford. Top scores of the day went to Vanessa Register (778) and the aforementioned Huckvale (774). Andrew Tustian's 730 and Catherine Roberts' 721 finished the Oxford team. With the Light Blues' prolific collection of achievements this year, to add a victory at the BUSA outdoor championships on the 22 June would complete an outstanding year.

(Varsity, 14/06/2002)