Victory at the Fives National Championships

Just before the Easter break we witnessed an exhilarating end to the Schools’ Fives season with a victory for Cranleigh at the…

Just before the Easter break we witnessed an exhilarating end to the Schools’ Fives season with a victory for Cranleigh at the Girls’ Open Nationals at Repton School. This tournament saw the debut of a new and exciting collaboration between Cranleigh School and Cranleigh Prep with Charlotte B. in the Upper Sixth pairing up with Matilda F. in Form Six.

No one really knew what to expect, we hoped that we would be competitive but we were in unknown territory with Matilda playing girls five years older than herself.

What followed was quite remarkable. The girls gelled beautifully and were a credit to the school. Charlotte looked after her younger partner superbly and Matilda’s performances grew stronger and stronger as the day progressed.

Cranleigh won their group in the initial pool stage beating the pre-tournament favourites on the way and then progressed through the rounds without dropping a game. In the final they played against Shrewsbury, one of the powerhouses of the school game and last year’s winner. The pair performed excellently and won comfortably 3-0.

Huge credit goes to both of the girls who achieved a quite remarkable feat. It is the first time that Cranleigh has won an open tournament at National level.

Mr Halstead, Fives Coach said “I could not have been prouder of them”

This victory was the culmination of three days at the Nationals, following some fantastic Fives at the Boys’ Open and Boys’ U14 competitions.

Three pairs competed at the Boys’ Open and demonstrated a clear passion for the sport. Plenty of close matches were played against tricky opponents, with Liam R. and Henry H. advancing to the play-off stage.

This saw a tense match against local rivals, Charterhouse. Two well matched pairs that have been playing each other on and off over several years. All watching were on the edge of their seats for this incredibly close match. Cranleigh took the game on sudden death at 12-11, knocking Charterhouse out of the play-offs and advancing into the top 16.

Unfortunately in the next stage we drew St Olaves, another powerhouse of School Fives, which was always going to be a challenge. The pair competed admirably but were unable to advance into the quarter finals.

This was a fantastic farewell to all our Upper Sixth players who will be missed on the courts next year and have been strong ambassadors for the sport. They have proven themselves to be true assets to Cranleigh Fives!

We returned to Repton with three more pairs to compete in the U14 main competition – particularly impressive as none of the team have played Fives as their main sport this year.

All players put on a spirited show and gave the pool stage their all with two pairs advancing into the play-offs. Here we came up against some tough opposition, and one pair sadly bowed out at this stage. Quinn H. and Isaac C. advanced into the top 16 and put up a strong fight in their next match against Aldenham but unfortunately could not break into the quarter finals.

The boys showed themselves to be mature and positive players, representing Cranleigh superbly. They never gave up and approached each match with truly impressive attitudes. Well done all!

U18 Boys: Tom C., Tyler C-N., Jack H., Henry H., Liam R., Ed T.

U18 Girls: Charlotte B., Matilda F.

U14 Boys: Tom A., Isaac C., Will H., Quinn H., Oscar P., Dexter R.

U18 Boys: Tom C., Tyler C-N., Jack H., Henry H., Liam R., Ed T.

U18 Girls: Charlotte B., Matilda F.

U14 Boys: Tom A., Isaac C., Will H., Quinn H., Oscar P., Dexter R.

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