Fives 2003/04

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This has been a very enjoyable and comparatively calm season on the fives courts at Blundell’s. The numbers suggest that the popularity of the sport is still on the increase with 36 regular players and another 40 who manage to get on court once a week, with a notable migration from the squash courts. The conditions, usually treacherously unpredictable, remained favourably dry for all but a few sessions throughout the winter months and the squad of boys and girls enjoyed a number of fixtures of all codes of the game. 

The 1st IV played well against school opposition securing convincing victories over Malvern and King’s Bruton with a particularly exciting win over a very strong Sherborne team. Heavy defeats at the hands of the more experienced players of the Jesters, the RFA and Tiverton kept any inflated egos in check and proved a useful lesson in technique and strategy. Richard Dyke and George Graham as the regular 1st pair played well at the West of England Tournament reaching the final of the doubles’ plate without really fulfilling their potential. Ed Mills and Phil Duncan improved considerably and by the end of the season were a potent force in the doubles play. All four boys were awarded their Half Colours for their sound efforts and memorable performances this season. 

The girl’s squad of 10 trained well and maintained an air of heightened enthusiasm. They attended the Ladies competitions at St Paul’s and Malvern College which remain the only source of open competition and were greatly enjoyed. On 1st February, Blundell’s hosted the first South West Fives Tournament for Girls but in the event of no other schools entering Blundell’s recorded a resounding win! Despite the lack of competition the girls demonstrated a good level of skill and motivation with Alex Steel winning the silver quaich in an exhausting final against Kathryn Atherton. The latter along with Claire Bowen and James Lock were awarded their Junior Colours. Henry Oakes won an excellent final against Richard Longstreet for the Year 9 Cup, both promising prospects for the future.

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