Magnus Oakes and Arjun Bhushan take a look at women’s regionals in the East and London region.
After a highly successful and very well spirited UMIR we look forward to the last regional indoors tournament of the year: UWIR. With 18 teams attending and a wider regional pool to draw on it will be very exciting to see how this tournament turns out. With five Div 1 and four Div 2 nationals spots on the line this looks likely to be a hotly contested tournament with quite a few exciting rivalries to watch.
Brunel women are coming off exceptional play at UXIR and will have high hopes for this tournament. Their match against Imperial this tournament is one to keep your eyes on as it may play an important role in deciding the narrative of this budding rivalry between the two schools. Their women were especially great and isolating players at mixed so it will be exciting to see how they perform without their male counterparts.
Cambridge is looking to continue their streak of nationals qualification at the last regional indoors tournament of the season. With a few players who weren’t at UXIR they may have a surprise or two for the teams who might think they know the Cambridge team well. It’s a regional tournament with Oxford in it so Cambridge are looking to continue from their strong performances at fake Varsity last year and beat Oxford.
UEA are again a team to watch at this tournament. Their dangerous zone and players who are basically walking highlight reels mean that they are undeniably a threat to whoever they go up against. Hopefully they bring the enthusiasm and amazing spirit they normally contribute to this tournament too.
Imperial unfortunately weren’t able to secure nats spot at mixed or men’s, so at this tournament they’ll really be gunning for a nationals spot. Despite their women’s team being littered with some international level players, they’ll be adopting a spartan mentality going into this tournament and looking to end their indoor season strong.
KCL are looking to make it three-for-three in winning regional tournaments but will certainly face stiff opposition here. With a selection of powerful cutters and handlers they must been seen as a favourite team to place highly in the tournament but may find it difficult to replicate the success they had in men’s or mixed. With a recent loss to UCL women outdoors it seems that they may face a tougher road to the final here than in their other competitions.
LSE are something of a dark horse. Not competing in any of the other indoors tournaments, it will be interesting to see what sort of a team they bring.
Oxford’s men performed very well at their regionals and their women must be looking to replicate their success. It will be interesting to see if they can get revenge against Sussex who dominated both mixed and men’s regionals against Oxford. Some of the players on these teams will have played in a game that generated extremely low spirit scores at mixed, so that may be something to watch going into this tournament. Additionally, it’ll be exciting to see Cambridge and Oxford’s 150-year-old sporting continue to play out.
Both Chichester and Oxford Brookes had success in only their mixed regionals so we can expect both teams to be looking to replicate that success in this final regional tournament.
Portsmouth narrowly missed out on a nationals spot at mixed indoors and won spirit with a very impressive 12.57 average. To perform well in a tournament and win spirit always says good things about a team’s chemistry so we believe they are a team to watch.
Watch out for Surrey’s women at this tournament. With a strong existing squad including Claudia Carnell and Eve Magawon from Guildford Ultimate and massive pick-ups in Iceni veteran Hannah Brew and GB Junior Eleanor Stratton, this team is experienced and is confident in their ability to take home some silverware.
Sussex are looking very strong going into this tournament. Matching Kings with a two-for-two record at indoor regional tournaments, the match up of those two will certainly be an exciting one. With a few exciting international student additions, their fast-paced offence and flexagon defence will present a definite challenge to all the teams at this tournament.
UCL have qualified for Div 1 in the previous tournaments this year, and their women will look to be no different. This time they’ll be bringing some new faces and pickups to this tournament in hopes finally taking home a trophy. With third at mixed regionals and second in men’s regionals, they’re looking for a first place finish at this tournament.
Overall, due to the combination of regions that is occurring in this tournament, this is a harder one to call. With that in mind we predict the first teams will place:
- Oxford Brookes