Alex King, a third-year Natural Sciences undergraduate at St Catharine’s, scored the final try in the 140th Varsity Men’s Rugby Union Match at Twickenham on 2 April.
The Dark Blues were ahead 21-0 by half time and an impressive second-half performance from the 14-man Cambridge side was not enough to regain lost ground. Alex’s try in the 80+3rd minute was the culmination of exceptional Cambridge pressure in the Oxford half right down to the final whistle. The final score was 21-17 to Oxford.
Commenting on his try, Alex said:
“Coming on in the 50th minute at 21-0 down, my job was to get the ball wide and exploit the space Oxford were giving us inside the 15 metre channels. I was quickly lobbed into the deep end with a high ball to gather, but gained massive confidence once Cambridge became quickly onto the front foot. It felt like a try was inevitable, despite some decisions going their way including Dougal Russell’s grounding of my cross-kick, but we eventually rolled over. I ended up being the beneficiary of an excellent pass when I scored in the last play. Scoring was a surreal moment, especially in front of all my friends who had come to support. I’m so grateful for the experience.”
He also paid tribute to the team spirit demonstrated by the Light Blues:
“It’s a huge shame about the result but playing with such heart in the second half is a memory I’ll cherish forever. There was so much belief within the team, and at that point we were playing for each other. In the two-week build up to Varsity, we bonded so well as a squad and it really showed in the last 15 minutes. Nobody would give up until that final whistle.”