Cambridge University Croquet Cuppers 2019
The Cambridge University Association Croquet Club, in addition to raising a team for the Varsity Match against our rivals Oxford, run an inter-collegiate Croquet Cuppers competition throughout our summer term. This year, we were generously sponsored by the Croquet Association.
There were 44 entries, a 10% increase on last year, each in a team of four. This makes 176 young and ambitious students stepping onto the lawns, many for the first time. We play exclusively Association Croquet at Cambridge - Golf Croquet is unheard of - and novices seem to take to the 14-point flavour very well. The format is a straight knockout, best-of-two doubles with ties broken by net hoops, making for some exciting matches and many close finishes.
Every College has a patch of grass where a court may be laid out, providing ample capacity for the tournament. However, considerable variability of size, slope, and speed does mean that home advantage can play a role. The final is played at a neutral venue, the best College lawn, at Leckhampton, Corpus Christi College.
Despite a week or two of rain, the tournament progressed well. In the top half of the draw, experienced campaigners King's I reached the final with little difficulty. In the bottom half of the draw, newcomers Darwin IV had an excellent run to the semi-final, but were beaten by Peterhouse I. In the final, King's reproduced their good form in front of an expectant crowd to take the title by +24 and +7(t). The Croquet Association lent some prestige to the event by sending their President, Quiller Barrett, to present the trophy and prizes.
We are most grateful for the support of the Croquet Association, and look forward to working with them in the future to encourage more young people into the game