Another term, another 8 weeks of sport.
It was a cracking start to Jesus’ sporting calendar on Tuesday, with men’s rugby and 2nds football both in action. The rugby team, freed from the shackles of Fielden’s captaincy, were hoping to introduce themselves into college rugby’s top league in style. Spending most of the first half camped in the John’s/Anne’s half, Markland’s side managed to establish a lead at half time. They held on in the second half to win 29-12 and put themselves top of the league. That’s right, the best team in the uni. And that is how it remains, until New’s 33-10 victory is finally confirmed at least.
Not to be outdone, the men’s 2nds football team put on a stellar first-half display against a lacklustre (at best) Wadham 3rds, despite lacking key players Proudfoot and Khanijau. The opposition managed to put out only 10 players, and their keeper had a torrid time against the firepower of the likes of Lester and Gebbie (yes, that’s right, President Gebbie grabbed himself a goal) and Jesus went into the interval 5-1 up. Whispers that we might be ending up with a cricket score emerged as Wadham lost another player at half time, while Chapman was able to bring on fresh legs to ensure Jesus’ dominance. The second-half display was less impressive from Jesus, although it did see the industrious Cakebread finally put away one of his 50 chances to get off the mark for the season. 6-1 the result.
The women’s season doesn’t get underway until next week in the footballing world, although Parker-Humphreys will be hoping to ride on the tide of enthusiasm kicked up by Maguire last year and get off to a winning start.
The men’s firsts, on the other hand, had a less successful week. Facing relegated Trinity, who could boast a Blues centre-back in their starting line-up, the game was always going to be tough. The first-half was a high quality affair, with both teams creating chances to no avail. That was until Cooke broke down the wing and saw his shot parried by the keeper, into the path of the oncoming Skillcorn (who managed to get off the mark at the right end this season). Football managers would describe this goal, on the stroke of half time, as the perfect time to score. Going into the break 1-0 up, Jesus were feeling confident. This all changed a few minutes into the second half when the Blues captain/all time most capped/all time top scorer came on for Trinity. To make a long story short, he was really good, and Jesus lost 3-1. Not the best of starts, but the pundits are already pointing to the way Jesus started last year as evidence that one game doesn’t make a season.
Hockey also began this week. The women’s team had a bit of a false start. With new captain Page at the helm, hopes were high. The squad was assembled, only to be disappointed by the news that the opposition had cancelled the game. Birthday girl Page claimed all of the goals in the 5-0 win for herself, and made a decision almost unheard of in college hockey circles: she put on a training session for the girls. Surely this is cause for great optimism for next week.
The men’s/mixed team didn’t have quite such an easy day. Newly capped Uni 3rds keeper Faisal Ebrahim was unavailable, leaving Lester with no choice but to stick with Downes in goal. The Manson-Mooney partnership that served Jesus so well last year looked like it was going to be fruitful again, as Jesus stormed into a 1-0 lead early on, Mooney getting the goal. They were unable to capitalize, however, and Lincoln managed to grab an equalizer late on to leave the final score 1-1. “Hugoals” Manson was unable to fully live up to his billing as the new star of the Uni 3rds, and he reportedly berated the team afterwards claiming “everyone was rubbish, Mooney was pretty good” in his post-match rant. Interesting talk on Twitter over the Uni vs College debate (much like club vs country for you football fans) dominated the aftermath of the match.
1st week saw record turnout for the Jesus College Badminton Club, so much so that Jesubites had to go to the extremes of sharing courts with Exeter. It’s set to be a good year in badminton at this rate.
Finally, netball. New captain Phillips was so supremely confident in the abilities of her side that she didn’t even start the game herself, leaving it in the capable hands of the rest of her team. Following a horrific injury to Wharton, Phillips did come on and helped her side to an emphatic 18-4 victory. Fear not though, Wharton made a miraculous recovery to play a further part in the game and doctors have said the grazes on her hands shouldn’t leave any long-term damage.
2nd week will be a big week for Jesus, with more fixtures and some Cuppers campaigns starting, so hopefully last year’s success can continue.