CUDT wins Varsity for the eigth consecutive time

Thursday, May 9th, 2019

The 46th Dancesport Varsity Match took place on Saturday 4th May, 2018 at the Cambridge University Sport Centre – the final fixture of the season for the Cambridge University Dancesport Team and their chance to seal another undefeated season.

Varsity has a different structure to all the others competitions we had faced so far this year. Each side enters two teams of nine couples to compete in the Varsity Match (A Team) and Challenge Match (B Team). In each match, each team is divided into three heats – the Home side A,B & C and the away side D,E & F. Each heat then dances against each of the opposite team’s heat in a straight final format where judges mark couples in descending order 1-6. A first mark earns six points for the team and a sixth placing earns 1 point. All the scores are then added together across nine finals of each of the four dances – Waltz, Quickstep, Cha-cha-cha and Jive, and the team with the higher score wins. This format requires couples to be all-rounders in both Ballroom and Latin. The high number of final rounds to dance (twelve for each couple across four dances) in a short space of time and the length of each round means that fitness plays an incredibly important role in this match. The Cambridge Squad had been training incredibly hard in the run up to this competition to ensure we kept fighting until the very end of each track.

The day began, as usual, with the Challenge Match. The strength of this year’s Varsity squad meant lots of couples were competing for limited places, but those dancers selected for the team put on a dominant display from the start, reflected in the final scores, with a massive 1320 points difference between the two teams.

Challenge Match ResultCambridgeOxford
Waltz668277
Quickstep673272
Cha-cha660285
Jive663282
Total26641116

Congratulations must go to all members of the B Team, but especially Hendrik Pröhl and Marta Tomaselli, our outgoing captain, for winning Best Ballroom and Best Overall Couple and Lawrence Alexander and Lara Weaver for winning Best Latin Couple from both teams.

After a short break, the afternoon began with the Varsity Match, in which the top nine couples from both teams took to the floor against each other. Oxford had some very strong dancers, but Cambridge’s strength in depth and stamina showed through. The final scores show a clear Cambridge victory, marking our eigth consecutive Varsity victory:

Varsity Match ResultCambridgeOxford
Waltz645300
Quickstep656289
Cha-cha631314
Jive618327
Total25501230

Bence Börcsök and Rachel Cummings won Best Ballroom Couple from both teams, while Sam Rowe and Inna Kaptcan won the Best Latin and Best Overall couple prizes. As a separate event, CUDT Head Coach David Mallabone also announced the Couple of the Year award, chosen by CUDT’s distinguished panel of coaches for the couple who have exemplified the work ethic and team spirit of CUDT. This year’ award deservingly went to Isobel Marchant and Megumi Yamamoto, who have both worked exceptionally hard to improve a great deal and achieve outstanding results.

So concludes an eigth successive undefeated season for the Cambridge University Dancesport Team. Thank you to all our dancers, coaches and supporters over the past year, without whom none of this would have been possible. With a large crowd watching us on home turf, the atmosphere at Varsity was electric and really helped us all keep fighting till the end. After an afternoon of additional open events, in which Cambridge dancers and alumni again dominated, both teams celebrated the end of the year together with a social at St Philip’s Church Centre on Mill Lane. The team now looks forward to celebrating its successes with the annual garden party and team dinner next month, before setting out on a new season in 2019-2020 under the leadership of incoming Co-Captains Hendrik Pröhl and Madeleine Morelli-Batters.