Friday 27 June
A lucky break of sunshine towards the end of a very wet day allowed staff and OCs to meet for their annual cricket match. With the OCs this year coming from as far as Southampton, it was looking to be a competitive match. Staff took to the field first and wickets began to fall with some aggressive bowling. The OCs managed to total up a respectable score of 153 with a notable innings from Billy Webb (OC 2010, Gascoigne), batting through until retirement. With a good run chase required against some formidable bowling, the staff started well and kept up with the run rate. The match came down to the wire, with Player of the Match Harminder Bhella (OC 2010, Queen Anne), who also batted through, needing to hit a 4 off of the last ball for a win, but pleasing to the crowd and staff he hit a six for the winning runs! Resulting in the staff team being unbeaten this season.
Saturday 28 June
On Saturday 28 June a select team of current students and Cokethorpe staff came together to compete against our strongest OC team to date. At 2pm the rain stopped, the sun came out and the game got underway. It was an impressive start from the School XI with some slick combination play leaving LuisaMae Lisi (Fourth Form, Harcourt) to put the ball high into the goal to take the lead. The OCs came back strongly dominating the end of the second half and forcing some impressive saves from Mrs Billington in the Cokethorpe goal. With the scores level going into the second half the pressure was on and the talent from the former students started to show. With two capped England Internationals in Captain Sunny Rickets (OC 2011, Swift) and Elisha Evans (OC 2013, Swift) amongst the line-up and all girls now playing competitively in University and club sides it was the best quality society game to date. The final score was a respectable 3-1 to the OCs but the match was a great event and performance from all.
Saturday afternoon began with rain and much anticipation for the annual OC v School 1st XI football match with guest appearances from two members of staff, Mr Bown and Mr Hayne. A hot afternoon signalled a more cultured style of play with possession and ‘keep ball’ being the order of the day. The quality of the passing at times was excellent. Christian Perkins (OC 2005, Harcourt) marshalled the OC defence alongside Tom Nelson (OC 1997) and Ian ‘Bobby’ Moore (OC 1999), forming a triangle of players bringing back memories of bygone years. The play ebbed and flowed and Ryan Oliver (Lower Sixth, Swift) alongside new 1st XI Captain Charlie Cassettari (Lower Sixth, Vanbrugh) posed problems at all times for the OC defence with Jack Biggs (OC 2012, Feilden) making several useful saves. Scott Cade (Upper Sixth, Swift) needed all his experience to keep the scores level at half time.
As tiredness set in chances came and went for both sides but with 15 minutes to go the OC defence finally gave way to a School goal scored from close range by James Tanner (Fourth Form, Vanbrugh). With a few minutes to go a second goal from Charlie Cassettari (Lower Sixth, Vanbrugh) for the School team brought a comfortable 2-0 victory. Christian Perkins (OC 2005, Harcourt) was awarded the man of the match but notable performances were also seen for the school from Ross (Fifth Form, Vanbrugh) and James Tanner (Fourth Form, Vanbrugh) and a cameo role from Callum Breslin (Upper Sixth, Queen Anne); for the OCs from Guy Biggs (OC 2010, Feilden). The standard of football seen was excellent and the game was a resounding success.
As part of what turned out to be a lovely day, the Cokethorpe Shooting Ground was happy to welcome back a few familiar OC ‘shots’ from the past. There were those who had not picked up a gun for some time to those who are competing regularly for their universities, clubs and further afield.
The competition of twenty four birds, from four stands, eventually saw Ethan Bosse (OC 2013, Vanbrugh) stealing victory from Charles von Hoven (OC 2013, Vanbrugh) by a single clay, in the ‘Shoot Off’. A thoroughly enjoyable afternoon for all.
The eagerly awaited netball match took place almost immediately after the hockey match so with a quick drink and a change of footwear the teams set to the court. The OC team were looking incredibly strong and very tall. With Sophie Fisher (OC 2012, Feilden) up front and Alyce McNaughton (OC 2012, Gascoigne) and Connie Manning (OC 2012, Swift) in defence the staff knew it was going to be a tough match. The first three quarters were closely contested and although Mrs Cooper was doing a fine job at goalkeeper and Mrs Brookes being in complete control in the centre court the OC defence were making it very difficult for the staff team to convert goals. Up until this point the OCs were moving the ball round well and the dynamic duo in defence were applying a great deal of pressure to Mrs Orton and Lydia McCall (Upper Sixth, Vanbrugh). After the third quarter the score was still very close at 8-6 to the OCs. Not to be deterred the staff team felt that a last push was in order and a few high fives later they completely dominated play winning the final quarter 8-0 making the final score 14-8 to the staff. Congratulations to all who played, it was played in excellent spirit and it was so great to see may OCs back on Cokethorpe soil playing sport.