Women’s Cuppers: Final Preview

With the Women’s Football Cuppers Final taking place this Saturday at Grange Road, the game is on

After a cracking fixture for the Men’s Final last week, Girton-Medwards and Clare-Peterhouse are preparing for what should be an exciting match. The Tab interviews the captains of the competing teams.

Edwina Otira, Girton-Medwards

The first thing that strikes you about Medwards Captain Edwina Otira is her enthusiasm. With Girton captain Svenja Granderath, she has led a third division team through to the Cuppers Women’s Finals, beating teams divisions above them.

The Girton-Medwards team is strong, with 3 Blues players, all on the Girton side. They have players with a range of sporting experience, including netballers, who sprint from netball training to football matches. They play a cunning game, defeating strength with speed and tactics.

2 wc

Yet most of all Girton-Medwards are keen. The merging of colleges to make up numbers seems pointless, as, I am told, 22 players once turned up to a game. In the past, the captain has had to message the girls telling them not to turn up. This enthusiasm, she hopes, will pull them through to victory.

The merged team has only been together since the beginning of the year. Yet despite Medwards receiving an invite “out of the blue”, the team have gelled really well. After their match, preceded by a one day drinking ban, they plan to have the biggest of nights out together.

1 wc

Girton-Medwards have breezed through cuppers so far, with not a single goal scored against them. Their game against Churchill left them with an impressive 6-0 score, and they defeated Homerton 2-0 in the semis. Their most challenging game, says Edwina, was against Trinity, who threatened them with brutal physical strength. But after being “rough” with them, Medwards-Girton left them defeated 1-0.

But Peterhouse-Clare provide a challenge for them. “We knew they were the ones we had to watch” says Edwina. Although also only in the third division, like them, Peterhouse-Clare contains several Blue players. Teammates will face teammates in the carnage of the ensuing match.

But Medwards-Girton are ready to face their opponents, hoping their keenness will make them the champs. Edwina says to “Let the best team win”.

Sophie Ingledew and Alicia Mavor, Peterhouse-Clare

Peterhouse-Clare rely on their brute strength.

With 5 uni players, they also boast a physically strong team, to which “everyone brings something”. In their matches, the ball is often kept at the front by attackers, yet their defence is also strong with a goalie from the uni team. This accounts for the fact that, except in one match, no goals have been scored against them in cuppers.

Yet, as another third division team, Peterhouse-Clare were not expected to get this far. As the captains themselves admit, Peterhouse and Clare aren’t exactly renowned for their sporting abilities.

4 wc

The problem, admits the captain, is usually numbers. With Blues players who struggle to make training and matches, they have played games several players down, including once 6 players to 11. In league matches they have, according to Sophie, “seven people max”, and it is down to Alicia’s obsessive approaching of players and the promise of cake that they get enough players at all.

The Cuppers tournament has been quite plain sailing for them so far. They beat Christ’s 7-0 and Jesus, a first division team, 2-0. The toughest match was against John’s/Kings in the quarter finals. Originally two players down, the team were losing 2-0 at half time. Yet with the arrival of another player in the second half, they quickly brought the score up to 7-2.

Medwards-Girton provide strong opposition, also containing uni-level players. Sophie, who plays for the eagles, says it will be “weird” playing against her teammates, who she has bonded with after winning their Varsity match this weekend. Yet the team plan to use this to their advantage. They hope their knowledge of the girls’ playing styles will help them plan tactics.

With enough players on the pitch in the final, Peterhouse-Clare promises to provide very strong opposition to Girton-Medwards. The captains plan to tempt their players out with cake, and celebrate afterwards by eating more cake. Although the match may be tough, the Peterhouse-Clare captains are very excited.