Sports Editor Laurence-Elliot Key rounds up the final day of London Varsity 2023.
After a day of Varsity action on Sunday where UCL reclaimed the London Varsity series crown, KCL faced their rivals, UCL, on the final day of the 2023 London Varsity Series to reclaim some pride in the final events of the competition. The final day of Varsity 2023 saw the Fencing and Rugby fixtures. Live-blogging coverage came from Sports Editor Laurence-Elliot Key at Richmond RFC where the Rugby event was alongside help from Varsity Correspondent Liz and Conor Williams. Roar News was supported with help from colleagues at KCL Radio and KCLSU.
KCL Women won their event overall, 131-105 after winning 45-43 in the épée event and 45-17 in the foil event. Despite losing the sabre event 45-41 to UCL, they did enough to win.
KCL Men lost their event, 132-112. While they did manage to win the sabre event, 45-42, losses in the foil and épée events meant UCL won overall.
Women’s Rugby: A tense start to the evening at Richmond Rugby Club as the KCL Women’s rugby team started their game in the wind, rain, and mud. The match would play to the eleventh hour, leaving the Women’s team with an enormous sense of pride and a 12-10 win. The first half was played evenly between the two teams, but the half time call was made just as UCL had gained a 10-0 lead, missing a conversion under the posts which would come back to cost them. During the second half, both teams played evenly with a particularly strong defence from UCL throughout the match. However, it was not enough to stop King’s number 10 from scoring a try with 14 minutes to spare. From then on KCL fought hard with a several counter attacks with this pressure leading to a UCL player being yellow carded and then in the very last minute, the team managed to score and convert a try leading to the nail biting end of a very close game. In a post-match interview, one player described the match as ‘stressful’ given that their comeback came so close to the end of the game.
Men’s Rugby: The last game of Varsity week saw a huge crowd in the stadium as the men’s rugby team went head to head with their counterparts from UCL. Unfortunately, the result would end in a 22-20 win to UCL. The start of the match was confidently in KCL’s favour as they led 14-0. Then, with three points from a penalty to the UCL team, half time was called at 14-3. It was an even match that had the crowd on the edge of their seats in amongst the rain and chants. There were high expectations that KCL would glean a win from this match having beaten UCL twice before this season. Right until the last play of the game, KCL looked like they would be victorious leading 20-15 despite some strong attacks from UCL. However, right at the end of the match UCL finally broke through the defences and converted their try meaning they won the match. Another extremely close Varsity match in which KCL Men’s rugby team should be very proud of their effort.
After the final day of Varsity, the overall score stands at KCL 12-17 UCL. Many congratulations to Team UCL for winning the event, but rest assured KCL will be back bigger, better and stronger next year!
Thanks must be given to Connor Williams for this article as well as KCL Radio and KCLSU for all their help during this event.