The historic University Association Croquet Club exists to promote croquet within the University at all levels. Whether you would like a social pastime or the challenge of competitive croquet - we are here to accommodate you.
Our facilities are top class; our members have access to two full-sized croquet courts in the scenic University Parks (how to find us), which are equipped to championship standard. Members can have their own key to the croquet hut ensuring that they have access to the lawns and equipment. All required equipment is supplied and players only need bring flat-soled shoes.
The Club welcomes players of all standards whether you are an absolute beginner or experienced player. As well as providing the facilities for a gentle game of croquet in the pleasant surroundings of the University Parks, we also offer coaching and arrange fixtures to suit all skill levels. Fixtures are great fun - the Club travels extensively to play other clubs in this country and abroad.
Games can be played where the weaker player is given extra turns to even the odds of winning. Consequently under handicap play you can be playing against a world-class player and both sides have a good game. The Club has official referees and handicappers who also assist in the coaching. Eight previous members of the Club competed in the last croquet world championships.
Wednesday evenings in Trinity Term and the summer vacation (5 p.m. onwards) are Club evenings when there is a high likelihood of meeting other players and committee members at the lawns. This continues throughout the summer vacation.
Membership is open to both University and non-University members from £12.00. Our lawns are open until the end of September. We have two categories of lawn fees ("term-time" £12.00 and "all summer" £24.00) to allow for the fact that undergraduates are not around over the summer. The deposit for a hut key is currently £5.00. Please click for more information about joining.
Croquet is designated as a HALF BLUE SPORT, and players with appropriate handicaps at the Varsity Match are recommended for Half Blues - the threshold is 8 or below for both men and women. As in all sports, players of exceptional ability may be recommended for Full Blues. You can also see the list of half blues awarded in the past.
The Club's fixtures range from A-class to beginners' fixtures and all members are encouraged to play. If you would like to play in any of these fixtures please let the Captain know and we'll see if we can get you in a team.
Student Championships 2023
Exeter University had a clean sweep at the Student Championships hosted by the Oxford University Association Croquet Club.
Aston Wade retained the Dudley Hamilton-Miller trophy for the Singles and with his partner, Kieran Moore, also won the Edmund Reeve Cup for the doubles. The prizes were awarded by the CA President, Patricia Duke-Cox. All games were level advanced.
We welcomed students from Cambridge, Manchester and Reading plus, of course, Oxford. Full report to follow.
Varsity Match 2023
Cambridge wins 7-2! What went wrong? In part this was due to the Oxford coach coaching four of the Cambridge team, who happen to live in Oxford, over last summer vacation. As always it was a fiercely contested but friendly match in the beautiful surroundings of the Hurlingham Club, London, who most kindly hosted us. A full report can be found here.
Cuppers attracted over 200 teams of four playing home and away level doubles. The huge knockout was ably handled by Gus Smith, the Cuppers Secretary. Successful teams in the quarter finals and beyond had the option to play on the OUACC full-size courts in the University Parks.
The final was between last year's winners Brasenose and Hertford, with Hertford carrying off the trophy, or would have if it had been returned from 2021!
Varsity Match 2022
Oxford wins 6-3! Oxford wins the varsity match again, after a beautiful day at the Hurlingham Club in London.
See here for a full report courtesy of Simon Hathrell at Anglia Croquet.
Croquet Cuppers 2022
Around 800 participants from 34 colleges have competed in this year’s Oxford University Croquet Cuppers! There was a great deal of variety in the skill and tactical knowledge of the tournament entrants. A particular challenge, especially for the most experienced players, was navigating the unpredictable terrain of the terrible college croquet lawns. Nevertheless, the play improved rapidly as the tournament went on, and so did the lawns, with the final and semi-finals (and optionally the quarter-finals) being played on the full-sized university lawns with more sturdy hoops. At this stage, the most practised teams started getting the clearest upper hand.
And so, we reached the final: Brasenose vs Brasenose! The cuppers players at Brasenose have been practicing hard, leading to a spectacular intra-college showdown at university parks, with many spectators sipping Pimms’ in the blazing sun.
Special thanks must go to those who made the event possible. The cuppers director, Will Allfrey, and our club coach, Ian Plummer, worked hard to make the competition run smoothly and at a high standard of play. We must also thank our sponsors who provided the treasure trove of rewards for the winners (and a bottle or two for the runners up): the Oxford Wine Company, the Oxford Artisan Distillery, and the Croquet Association. The Croquet Association has been, as always, particularly supportive and we are always keen to work together and encourage student croquet.
Student Championships 2021
The AC Student Championships have been played! The winner of the singles was the extremely talented Aston Wade of The University of Exeter, and the doubles was won by the University of Oxford team, Harry Anderton and Nick Orr.
This year we had 4 entries into the doubles tournament: two from the University of Cambridge, one from the Imperial College London and one from the University of Oxford, and 8 entries into the singles, with students coming from The University of Cambridge, of Oxford, of Exeter and Imperial College London. The entrants were a real mix, taking a diverse spread of different courses, from Medieval History to Finance-and-Accounting to Physics. We also had a range of ages, with both postgraduates just finishing off their theses and first year undergraduates playing.
We started playing on Saturday morning, as well as tucking in to the bananas, crisps and Pimms and lemonade on the sidelines. Between games players were able to socialise, talk about tactics and even get a bit of coaching from more experienced players.
After the games had all finished, we had a small presentation of the trophies, with the president of the CA, Quiller Barrett, present to say a few words.
Varsity Match 2021
Oxford wins 7-2! Despite having to substitute two of the team at the last moment we were victorious.
See here for a full report courtesy of Simon Hathrell at Anglia Croquet.
Croquet Cuppers 2021
Oxford University croquet cuppers resumed amongst a raft of constraints. College croquet lawns were covered in marquees providing temporary, safe, dining areas and visitors, even from other colleges, were barred. There was no way we could hold our usual massive 512 team event. Instead of this, we ran a smaller event for thirty-two teams of four players hosted on the OUACC’s lawns.
The final was Brasenose vs Magdalen. It was a gruelling game with good play from both teams. After the first game, Magdalen had gained themselves a three-hoop lead to take into the second. Brasenose put up a huge effort but could not quite get a break going for themselves. Magdalen however kept playing their game calmly and accurately, furthering their lead and taking home the cuppers trophy and some beers and champagne for their efforts. We hope to be back to the full cuppers format next year.
On the sunny weekend of 1-2 September 2018 Oxford hosted the association croquet student championships. Students from Oxford, Bath, Plymouth and Exeter universities sent down their representatives. For the first time in years Cambridge was missing, possibly as they were still licking the wounds of their defeat in the Varsity match. The doubles competition was won by Oxford students Kirandeep Saini and Mark Baker, who beat the Exeter duo Ian Mak and Ross Moore and the Plymouth pair James Woolas and Alfie ball. In the final of the singles competition Oxford's own Mark van Loon was defeated by Dan Gott, former Oxford student turned defector for Bath.
The prizes were presented by former AC world champion and current CA vice-president Stephen Mulliner, who brought his well known wit and charm to the occasion. Hopefully, many of this year's competitors will be back next year to compete again!
Oxford reclaimed its title in the Varsity Match with a 6-3 win against Cambridge. See here for a full match report. The format of the day is six singles games in the morning, and three doubles games in the afternoon, allowing for 6 or more Varsity Players during the day.
Congratulations to Lincoln College who have won the 2018 Croquet Cuppers tournament. They defeated Brasenose in the Final and won champagne and chocolates. Congratulations also to Angus Baird of Brasenose, who made a wonderful 5-hoop break and won our "man of the match" award, kindly sponsored by The Oxford Artisan Distillery. We are grateful to the Croquet Association for their sponsorship of the tournament, which once again attracted hundreds of teams and was the biggest sporting event held in Oxford University.
Varsity Match 2017
Oxford lost to a stronger Cambridge team (2-7) at the Hurlingham Club in London in early June. The format of the day is six singles games in the morning, and three doubles games in the afternoon, allowing for 6 or more Varsity Players during the day.
Student Championships 2017
We welcomed players from Cambridge, Exeter, Oxford, Plymouth and Sheffield.
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