Hastings’ Rupert Larkin was delighted to put a frustrating season behind him as he led the University of Warwick men’s tennis team to victory in the BUCS Big Wednesday Trophy final.
Larkin, a second year medicine student, has had to sit out much of his team’s fixtures this season due to degree commitments, but returned to help Warwick defeat the University of Sheffield 8-4 in their showpiece showdown.
And although Warwick have suffered an indifferent season, finishing fourth in their BUCS division, The Green Lawn Tennis Club’s Larkin was delighted to play his part as they ended it on a high.
“I was happy to win, I must admit. I hadn’t been playing for the team this year because I do medicine, which is obviously quite intense and therefore we don’t get Wednesdays off, which is when the BUCS matches are,” he said.
“I basically haven’t played a match for six months, which can be pretty frustrating, but I’m glad I was able to get the time off to play here. It means a lot to me.
“I was pretty nervous coming into the match because it is always different when hitting in practice to actually playing competitive matches.”
Big Wednesday is the finale of the BUCS sporting calendar, which sees 100,000 students each year take part in BUCS Wednesday competitions in some 3,500 teams, across 600 leagues - making it the biggest student sporting programme in Europe.
Larkin accepted the match - which included two doubles games and four singles - was by no means a classic, but felt Warwick did just enough on the day to edge a tight contest.
“It wasn’t great tennis. I managed to nick the first set and managed to wrap up the second much easier, which was a relief,” he added.
“I was happy to get that win for the team because it meant that at the very least we would have a tie-break shootout.”
British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) is the governing body for Higher Education sport in the UK, representing 170 institutions and facilitating 52 sport programmes. BUCS has been shortlisted for Governing Body of the Year at the BT Sports Industry Awards 2015 and is supported by Deloitte www.bucs.org.uk