On Sunday 8 November, a group of four Fives players from Radley travelled to Winchester to take part in the National Schools tournament. Due to injury and clashing commitments on Remembrance Sunday, a couple of team members had to be drafted in at the last minute to allow us to take two pairs. Although both Radley pairs were knocked out by very experienced opposition in the first round (Winchester 2 and St Paul's 3), they acquitted themselves extremely well in the Plate competition.
Alex McGee and Harry Varney showed they could hold their own against some talented players, with Alex' uncanny ability to return the trickiest shots combining extremely well with Harry's left-handed wizardry. Arthur Woyka and Jack Foreman managed to dominate their opposition, winning the "game of the tournament" against Marlborough and easily pushing past others in the group. Arthur's heavy shots proved to be unreturnable, and Jack's big match experience from Rackets came to the fore.
Unfortunately a late match against Malvern did not go our way, and Marlborough ended up taking the plate on points difference. Charlie Rothbarth, recovering from a knee injury, provided phenomenal support and showed himself to be an able and extravagant cheerleader during the matches, rallying others to our cause.
For most of the boys, the tournament provided their first competitive fixtures in Fives, and so their success is a real credit to the hard work they have been putting in over the last couple of years.