Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Oriel College Sports

We love the Oriel

Whilst well renowned for being a rowing college, Oriel is a dominant force in many other university wide sports. Below you will find links to a number of the different sports teams and squads that make up part of the sporting life at Oriel.

If your team is not featured here, please let the JCR Secretary (Rochelle Moss) know, and you can be added.

Despite being a small college, Oriel always manages to contribute its fair share of athletes to OUAC. There are no college athletics teams, except twice a year for Cuppers, and all training is done through OUAC, but you certainly don’t have to be at Blues standard in order to train. Training is a great way to keep fit and prepare yourself for what will hopefully be an Oriel victory in both Michaelmas and Trinity Cuppers next year, so if you’re interested in training but need convincing, then contact the team and get involved.

Oriel Badminton have a 2-hour practice session every week during term, and we always enter at least one team in the league and Cuppers. In previous years when turnout’s been high, we’ve also sometimes entered a mixed team as well as a Women’s Cuppers team. Teams for matches consist of four people, but we can have as many people as we like during training. Any questions email (sebastien.santhiapillai)

Oriel’s basketball team is open to anyone and all abilities. Training will be once a week with casual matches once a week and the college cuppers competition in Hilary.

When Trinity comes and the days grow longer, there’s no better way to spend a sunny afternoon than on the cricket pitch, with your mates, tearing into the opposition with bat, ball and chat.  Following our narrow escape from relegation, this year we hope to cling to our prestigious place in Division 3 once again. Naturally, having a laugh and enjoying some friendly cricket will always be the most important aspects of Oriel Cricket Club.

Players of all abilities are welcome and it must be said that some of Oriel’s finest players hadn’t even picked up a bat or ball before university.  Depending on our performance in the knock-out ‘Cuppers’ competition (and weather), there should be at least six games over the course of Trinity term, but there’s no commitment to playing in any more than you want to.  If you fancy being on the mailing list, then get in touch. The captain this year is Seb Santhiapillai and the vice captain  is Matt Collier

And just remember:

There once was a ball and a bat,

But to Oriel there’s far more than that.

On a fine summer’s day,

With some excellent play,

The important thing is really the chat.

In Trinity Term 3rd Quad turns into croquet central, its mental. There’s a croquet set available for general use in the Doll’s House so you can get your practice / Pimms on. There are two competitions to be aware of:

Cuppers which is the biggest croquet tournament in the world by participation. Over 400 teams entered last year so we expect to put out about 20-30 teams of 4 people each. Also being such a croquet powerhouse, Oriel has its own intra-college pairs tournament: the Stokes Shield which taken even less seriously than Cuppers.

Everyone is encouraged to get involved in both, no matter of how little experience / knowledge of the rules you have. Obviously most people come to Oriel with no idea of how to play but there are usually people lurking in the sunshine willing to give a few pointers. However for anyone who’s curious:


Stories of former successes and unfulfilled potential was what Oriel Football used revolve around. That was until the 2016/17 season where the team’s fortunes turned around. Oriel spent the entire season in the two promotion places until the final game, where a poor run of form meant we relied on Magdelan to beat or draw with Corpus to clinch a first Oriel promotion in over a decade. A Corpus winner from the final touch of the game was a heavy blow, but has motivated the team more than ever. This year the goal is to secure an Oriel promotion for the first time since the current University league system was put in place, as well as get a decent Cuppers run. Joining the football team is a great way to make close friends with people from different years, with a training session and a match every week, as well as socials throughout the year. Our league, the JCR 3rd division, is a competitive league but like all JCR divisions, a league in which a range of footballing ability plays in. So anyone interested in playing football, as long as they love the Oriel, is very welcome in our close knit team. If you want to find out more about the team or anything else then please email me ( or feel free to add me on Facebook and message me. The Women’s football team is a joint Oriel-Christchurch team and the captain is Toby Freedman ( They are always looking for more players as they consolidated their position in the JCR 3rd Division last season, after promotion in the 2015/16 season. The league and team is very mixed ability and not too intense, so everyone who is interested is more then welcome to join.

Michael Beer Oriel College Football Captain 2017-2018

To get you all pumped, here is the greatest ever goal in football

Our college is lucky enough to have its own gym. Should you wish to use the gym, you must fill in a Oriel College Gym Code of Conduct form, and have your fob activated at the Porters Lodge.

Oriel currently has one hockey team that competes throughout the year. During Michaelmas and Hilary terms we play in the Sunday leagues against other colleges and we are currently in Division 1. In the Summer, we compete in “mixed cuppers” and have previously made the semi-finals. In terms of who plays, anyone of any ability or gender is warmly welcomed into the hockey set up at Oriel. Unlike other colleges, we do not have a women’s team, but field a team of both genders in the men’s league (and have been very successful!) We have players currently who have never picked up a stick before, as well as those who play for the university teams. The captain this coming year is Dom Allen (

Oriel’s mixed lacrosse team is open to everyone in college- no previous experience required! We have fun, casual matches against other colleges on most Sundays in teams of at least 11 people. Non-compulsory practices can be organised for anyone who wishes to spend more time improving their stick skills and game tactics. In Trinity we also enjoy competing in the yearly intercollegiate cuppers tournament.

Oriel currently has two netball teams – an A team and a B team and both are amazing and in league 1 (the best woo!) and league 2 respectively, out of 5 divisions in total. Intercollegiate netball is a fun and sociable activity which is as competitive as you make it. We’re always keen to welcome players of all abilities. We’re really fun and always have a better time than the other team even if we lose!

The mixed rounders team is, without a doubt, one of the most popular sports at Oriel. With the laid-back (yet incredibly competitive) atmosphere during our weekly matches, many team socials, infamous crew-dates, and of course the stash, it’s easy to see why.  We’ve been unbeaten for several years now, and thus consider ourselves top of the Colleges Rounders League (if such a thing were to exist). Get involved if you want to be part of Oriel’s most successful sports team! (Rounders ability optional)

Rowing is the iconic sport of Oxford. In terms of college rowing thousands of students compete at Torpids and Summer Eights. At the university level the Boat Race it is one of the most hallowed traditions in Britain and the entire sport of rowing. If you would like to be part of this time honoured tradition then Oriel is the right place for you. Oriel College Boat Club (OCBC) is the most decorated college boat club with a long history of producing Blues rowers. We strive to maintain both of these accolades. We have one of the best college fleets, land training facilities, two highly committed coaches, incredibly supportive alumni and a culture and attitude which breeds success. We greatly encourage people who have never rowed before to give it a go. Oriel is a small college and one of the main reasons for our success has been our ability to help novices reach their full potential. Every year there are people who learnt to row at College competing in the boat race. Most years more than half the Oriel first eights learnt to row at Oriel, and sometimes all of them did. It is great to get in contact as soon as possible if you are interested in rowing at Oriel. But there are also other opportunities to sign up or learn more. The respective emails of the men’s and women’s captains are and Feel free to stop by the captain’s rooms: the men’s captain’s room is staircase 1 room 1; the women’s captain’s room is staircase 2 room 1. You can also send a message to the Boat Club Facebook account.

Oriel is a historically strong rugby college, however a couple of bad years and a reshuffle of the leagues has placed us in the 4th division. We have a mixed ability squad, with a combination of University players, complete beginners, and everything in between. This season promises some very winnable games, and is a great opportunity to get involved in college rugby. Even if you’ve never played before, do come along, training is a good opportunity to learn the basics, and the games are at a very accessible standard, so everybody will be able to get some game time. Most importantly, we have brand new kit this year, and will be ordering a load of stash (the best thing about college sport), early in Michaelmas, which should be enough to tempt you if you’re a bit unsure. On the social side, we have the most frequent events of any sports team in college, including drinks, BBQs, pub crawls, and termly socials with the Oriel netball team. The most exciting part of our social calendar this year is the return of our annual tour, which sadly hasn’t happened for the last two years. Anyone who’s at all interested in playing rugby this year, feel free to email me (, or drop me a fb message with any questions you might have, and I look forward to meeting you in Michaelmas!

James Somerville OCRFC Captain 2017-18

There are 3 men’s teams and 1 ladies’ team entered in the college squash league this year. We play matches once a week against other colleges, and also enter into Cuppers, which is a knock-out tournament. If you’re just out for a fun informal game, there is an internal Oriel league. All abilities welcome. Click here to book the college squash courts at the Rectory Road Annexe.

Welcome to Oriel Tennis! College league and cuppers both take place in Trinity term. Get in touch and join the Facebook Group

For fans of throwing and catching, for those looking for a complementary sport for Sunday afternoon recreation, the sport for you is Ultimate Frisbee. The high-intensity self-refereed game is easily accessible and has a great university wide social scene. An endearing simple game has all the panache and opportunity for the “big plays” as the best of them, it’s worth playing if only for the nail biting moments when it is not yet clear whether man will win the footrace with the ever dipping disc. Basically a cross between American Football and Netball but with a frisbee, you can find out more how to play on the (soon to be) revamped OW! website. Even if you don’t know how to play then still come along anyway.

There’s a usually a beginner’s tournament in Michaelmas, a spring league throughout Hilary and then cuppers happens in the first few weeks of Trinity. We will train on Sunday afternoons, probably at University Parks.

A brand new team for Oriel, whilst currently only a team of one, that also means that the legacy starts here and who doesn’t want to be part of THE legacy. To get involved email me @ matthew.pickering and I’ll hook you up with all the frisbee frolics.

Check out the Oriel Varsity Trip group on Facebook

or contact .
Varsity trip is the famous joint Oxford-Cambridge ski trip and you won’t want to miss out! For 2017 it’s going to be 2nd-9th December, and the base price is only £359. Both beginners and seasoned skiers are welcome

Touch Rugby is a mixed-gender, non-contact form of rugby. It is a fast-growing sport in the UK, and last year Oxford put together its first Uni mixed touch rugby team. Oriel had strong representation on this team and we hope to continue to see great interest in the sport in the college. There will be several inter-college touch rugby events throughout the year, including a planned Cuppers event in Michaelmas. People of all abilities are encouraged to give it a try as it’s very casual and we’ve always been able to rely on our strength in numbers. Don’t let the opportunity to play pass you by. We hope to convert a few people who think they’re a bit out of touch with sport.