A close encounter between UEL and SOAS saw the tied game end in a tense dispute over who had won. With the game score level at 4-4, angry words were exchanged as both teams thought they were victorious, but disagreed as to how the result was calculated. According to the rules, with UEL winning 9-8 on sets, there was a clear winner although the SOAS team had thought differently.
The day did not start well for the visitors. UEL entered the match two games down as their second singles player, Ahmed Abul Hasnat, dropped out and a replacement couldn’t be found under such short notice.
The visitors soon rallied with Josh Teoh and George Geaves comfortably winning their game in straight sets. Ali Chin and Marco Eng followed up with a brilliant victory, again in straight sets but they were tested by SOAS’ first doubles pairing.
Chin and Eng were up against it for most of their game, but their resilient display and strong defence was enough to see them home. After two games UEL had slashed the deficit and it was 2-2.
Jamaican international Sean Wilson was part of a thrilling game in his first outing of the afternoon. The first set ended 21-19 in favour of Wilson in a close encounter. At 19-18 up in the second set, two points away from the win, Wilson lost focus and conceded the set 21-19.
The third set was hotly contested with every point disputed, needing SOAS’s coach to step in. UEL’s main man was unable to capitalise on a strong start, losing the decider 21-18. This defeat for Wilson is the first ever loss he has had for UEL.
Chin and End emphatically won their second game in straight sets as their opponents were no match for them. They eased past 21-6, 21-7 as confidence started to grow. Geaves and Teoh were unable to follow suit, however, as they were beaten in straight sets. SOAS pulled ahead in the match with the score at 4-3 with Wilson’s game left to play.
Wilson stormed past his opponent comprehensively, taking his time against a taller opponent, moving him around the court and levelling the scores at 4-4. This meant that the count was on to see which side had taken the match.
There was a long dispute who had won the game with both teams fighting their corner hard. SOAS claimed it was on points won during the matches as they worked it out to be 156-86 to SOAS.
UEL captain Ali Chin maintained that UEL had won by sets, but the SOAS team were not accepting the result. UEL calculated their own score which came to 256 points.
With UEL having left the ground thinking they were out of the cup, a re-evaluation from the SOAS team had found out their scoring was incorrect.
SOAS’s coach Anthony MAcdonald later informed Chin that UEL’s figures were correct, leaving UEL victorious 9-8 in sets, which sent them through to the next round.
UEL are back in league action next week against Queen Mary University and they will be looking to carry on their good form from this game, searching for back-to-back wins.