Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Match Report - What a start for the Ladies!

And it is Helen who sent us the report this time, happily “volunteering”:

“Sunday 18 October 2009 – Reading Aces vs Oxford Ladies vs Maidenhead Ladies

Last Sunday saw the first fixtures for the all new Ladies Team. Neil was a much-appreciated stand in coach (although we did miss you, Jon!).

The first match was against Maidenhead, who have won the league many times over the last few years and are widely regarded as one of the hardest teams to beat. With Maïté and Tatiana setting, Valéne and Yang on the outside and Kerstin and Justyna in the middle, Oxford put forward a strong line up and started well, taking the first set 25 – 15. Oxford varied the line up for the second set, but the team’s lack of experience playing together started to show and they conceded the set 16 – 25. Things picked up in the tiebreak, however, and Oxford came through with a convincing 15 – 9 win. Strong hitting and consistent passing throughout the match earned Valéne ‘MVP’.

Kerstin battled valiantly against encroaching illness as second ref in the intervening match, but was forced to retire to the bench for Oxford’s final match. Although on paper Reading seemed to be less of a challenge than Maidenhead, they had shown a remarkable ability to keep the ball in play and were not be underestimated. Oxford started well, and the team gained confidence throughout the first set, with Carolina and Helen finding their feet in their new positions of outside and middle, respectively. Some good passing, especially from Justyna, enabled the setters to make full use of all the hitters, with Yang putting some killer cross-court balls across and Helen taking advantage of the women’s height net and teaching Reading not to set the opposition. Oxford went on to win the set 25 – 21. In what proved to be the final set of the day, the girls really started to play together as a team. Oxford maintained the lead they established early on and finished with a comfortable 25 – 11 win to take the match. The contribution of the Oxford setters was recognised with Maïté being awarded ‘MVP’.

Altogether, this was a great start for Oxford Ladies and we look forward to the next match!”

She also promised to complete it with few photos next time… you know… team photos, action shots, shower debrief… ;-)

Thanks a lot Helen and congrats to the Ladies,


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

No volley ball training this Thursday

Hi Everyone 

Another message, straight like/from the coach Neil:

Hi Gang,

I forgot to say the other night but there is NO VOLLEYBALL this week….We will be back in the hall on Thursday 29th Oct.

Sorry about that….


So that’ll be a skip for this week, back next one!



Too much success, not enough space!

Hi Everyone,

Just a quick piece of news on the request of our president: We (un)fortunately reached the max capacity of our current training slot in Headington, so we are not able to accomodate any further new demand at the moment.

Best idea is to contact first and someone will get back to you to let you know if/when anyone could join.

Also, we are always looking for another venue/training slot in Oxford to accomodate our further trainings needs, so again, if you have any idea or contact that might be useful, please drop us a line at the same address:




Thursday, October 15, 2009

Match Report - Mixed first games!

Courtesy of Mark, our mixed team captain, here is the season first mixed match report:

“SUNDAY 11th Oct - Newbury v Oxford v Farnborough

A new Oxford mixed team made a good start to the new BVA season last Sunday. There was a transition from last season’s league-winning mixed team, with several players departing to pursue new volleyball goals. Luckily, for this fixture we were able to call on Maite to lead the team from her favourite position as setter.

Our first match was away in the comfortable settings of St Gabriels school sports hall. The first game was against Fairnborough Lions, who finished in last position in the 2008/9 season. Our line-up included some new faces, Daniel and Ghislain took up places as middle and opposite, both growing into their positions as the game went on.

Oxford started tentatively winning the first set (25 - 23), with steady improvements in passing and hitting as the second set progressed. Farnborough resorted to passing the ball to the back of the court in order to win points, which allowed Oxford to reply with great hitting from Kerstin, Julien and Sofie. The Oxford side grew in confidence and won the second set (25 - 21). Special mention goes to the game’s referee (from Newbury), who at 18 years old had just qualified and made a good start to his refereeing career. Julien received ‘Most Valuable Player’ for the Oxford team after putting in a great performance.

After a quick bit of refereeing, it was time for the main event, a game against Newbury, who narrowly lost the league title to Oxford last season.

Newbury’s experienced team set out to score as many points as possible, but did not count on the Oxford team’s dogged defence. Mark replaced Daniel at middle and soon was hard at work against Newbury’s tall centre hitter. Oxford took their chances against Newbury, with Kerstin and Julien making some great hits through the wings. However Newbury’s team won the set 25 - 15. In the second set, Oxford were well organised and started strongly against Newbury scoring several points without reply. Newbury’s line-up changed for this set (making full use of the rules by playing under 18 male players in the roles of ladies) were able to reply strongly. A hotly contested set followed, with each team fighting hard and eventually Newbury won the set 25 - 21.

One win and one loss was a good result for the new mixed team. Newbury can be sure of a sterner test when they visit Oxford next !


That’s what I call a comprehensive piece of news ;-) Thanks a lot Mark!