The esports Varsity matches were held in March and AprilSameer Mazhar with permission for Varsity

This is the 11th year of Varsity esports, with Cambridge having won six of the past ten events and Oxford the other four. Additionally, Cambridge was hoping to defend the title they have held for the past two years, while Oxford were looking to win back a trophy they hadn’t held since they lost it in 2022.

The first two games, Overwatch 2 and Rocket League, were played at the Insomnia Gaming Festival in Birmingham on 29 March. The remaining three games all took place across 6 and 7 April at the Red Bull Gaming Sphere in London, marking its third year in a row hosting Varsity.

Overwatch 2

The Overwatch 2 game, a first-to-four match, wasn’t meant to be particularly close – Oxford have the second-best university team in the country, whereas Cambridge struggled to even put a team together in Michaelmas.

As a result, Oxford won the first round very easily and started to play with their food and have some fun instead of playing their best. They still won the second round, but as Cambridge subbed better players in and Oxford swapped their team roles around for fun, the tides turned, and Cambridge took the third round, making the score 2-1 in Oxford’s favour. Oxford immediately returned to their normal positions and narrowly won the fourth round, but after Cambridge took round five Oxford decided to sub in their star first team player, a former pro. Cambridge fought valiantly, but Oxford took the sixth round, making the final score 4-2 in their favour. The MVP was Oxford’s star support player Eris aka Tyranti, who was instrumental in their victory.

Rocket League

The Rocket League game, again first to four, wasn’t meant to be close either – these teams played each other at ESI Next Gen, and Cambridge won convincingly – although Oxford were missing their best player and had a substitute in that match.

At Varsity, however, there weren’t any substitutions, and it was Oxford who took the first round. In the second round Cambridge were able to even the score, and they won again in the third round to take a 2-1 lead. After a quick halftime break, Oxford came out strong in round four, levelling the score once more at 2-2, although Cambridge came right back in round five, taking themselves to match point, and they were able to follow through in the final round to take the Rocket League victory, the final score being 4-2 to Cambridge. Tommy, the captain of the Cambridge team, was selected as the MVP, having scored some spectacular goals throughout the series.

Counter-Strike 2

Going into Counter-Strike 2, a first to two match, the Cambridge side was a bit of an unknown quantity; in fact Cambridge hadn’t fielded a student team this academic year at all before the event.

However, Cambridge came out strong with a dominant win in the first round on Oxford’s choice of map. Cambridge followed it up with a comfortable win in the second round on their own map pick as well, making the Counter-Strike 2 final score 2-0 to Cambridge. The MVP was team captain Ollie aka Fourlom, making it his third Counter-Strike Varsity MVP award in a row.

League of Legends

Last year Oxford’s team took the League of Legends victory over Cambridge in an extremely close game, and this year both teams brought strong fighting talk to the pre-game interviews. Being a first to three match with such long rounds makes it consistently the longest match each year, and this year was no different, clocking in at just under four hours total.

Cambridge came out of the gate strong with a fast and dominant first round victory, and they took an early lead in the second round as well, but Oxford brought it back to tie up the score. Oxford took a big lead in the third round, but then made a crucial mistake towards the end which suddenly allowed Cambridge to take a surprise win. In the fourth round, Cambridge took an early lead, and very deliberately followed through. This brought them victory in the League of Legends game, with a 3-1 scoreline. Jeremy aka ThatOneAsian457 was the team’s MVP choice, having displayed some excellent tank play throughout the series.


The Cambridge Valorant team was also difficult to estimate, as again Cambridge hasn’t fielded a student team this academic year. However, Cambridge had so far won every single Valorant Varsity match, and the team they brought this year had higher individual competitive ranks than Oxford’s squad.


Mountain View

Cambridge boxers make it five in a row against Oxford | Varsity

The first round was Oxford’s map pick, but Cambridge took an early lead, and although Oxford were able to claw some of it back towards the end, it was Cambridge who won the round. The second round, on Cambridge’s map pick, delivered much of the same, with Cambridge taking an early lead again and managing to convert it to another round win, giving them the overall Valorant victory 2-0 over Oxford. Cambridge’s MVP, Will aka Stardust, put on a standout performance and was also the only Cambridge player to actually come to the event.

The overall Varsity esports 2024 scoreline was 4-1 in Cambridge’s favour, continuing their streak to three consecutive victories over Oxford and bringing them to seven Varsity esports victories to Oxford’s four.