Photo by Patrick Kamalu

Varsity 2016 began today and it could not have started any better as UKC men’s and women’s badminton teams both triumphed over CCCU to secure an overall win for the sport. Patrick Kamalu reports.

The matches were hosted on Christ Church’s own turf at the CCCU Sports Centre and the home crowd were certainly vocal as they cheered on from the sidelines. But this did not faze the away side, who began the proceedings with the self-assurance and confidence that has been so characteristic of Team Kent throughout varsities of the past.

The first games to be played were the men’s doubles and it was the Kent side that prevailed as the team consisting of Ryan and Ben recorded a 2-0 victory, with the games finishing 21-7 and 21-10 respectively. On the other court however, the women’s doubles were not as fortunate as they narrowly lost their game in 3 sets after a stunning comeback by CCCU who were down a set.

Men’s doubles action during Varsity 2016. Photo by Patrick Kamalu

This was only a minor setback it seemed, as the first women’s singles game to be played resulted in victory, which was followed by wins for Rudy in the men’s singles by two sets to nil (21-16 and 21-12) and the team consisting of J.R and Ryan Monk, who also won in straight sets. Despite the large margins in some of the matches, the overall level of badminton being played was breath-taking at times by both UKC and CCCU players, which made for some very entertaining games.

The final game played proved to be a fierce encounter between UKC and CCCU in the final women’s doubles game. The UKC women’s side, having already secured overall matches-won percentage to win Varsity with a game to spare, were hoping to conclude with a victory. The hotly contested match seemed to be going their way when UKC went a set up; however, CCCU clawed their way back into the contest by levelling the scores, leaving it all to play for in the final set. They completed the comeback to beat UKC by 2 sets to 1 but it was Kent who were joyous as they celebrated the first win of Varsity 2016.