OC Eton Fives 125th Anniversary Dinner


10 May 2018
The Old Cits’ Eton Fives 125th Anniversary Dinner at Lord’s
John Patrick Reynolds
Some 180 Old Citizens and friends gathered at Lord's on Friday 4th May 4 to celebrate the 125th birthday of the Old Citizens' Eton Fives Club.
Former EFA chairman and president Richard Barber, OBE, gave the speech that topped off the evening, and went as far as to describe us as: "probably the most distinguished and respected club in the long history of Eton Fives."
We were joined in the Long Room for dinner by representatives from 16 Fives clubs around the country, including a huge contingent of more than a dozen from the old boys of Zuoz, who travelled from all over Europe to be with us. One of their number, Felix Buchi, spoke to us about the friendship between the two clubs, and presented us with some engraved crystal glasses and a decanter. Our links with the Zuozers began in the 1920s with a visit by the lyceum to England and was cemented in the 1950s when Old Citizens first travelled to Switzerland to play. We've been playing there ever since.
Others travelled vast distances, including Old Carthusian Justyn Comer and his friend Sally Muscarella who flew in from the US and our very own Colin Keeler, who also crossed the Atlantic.
From CLS we were very pleased to be joined by assistant head Andrew McBroom, deputy head Richard Brookes, and current master in charge Rahim Dharamshi. The current generation of schoolboys was represented by Tomos Bliss, Nick Choustikov and Saajan Shah. They were greeted by a sunny evening - and a Lord's scoreboard which declared "Old Citizens' Eton Fives Club - 125 not out".
After the meal, we were guided through the history of the club by four speakers – David Cooper, immediate past-president of the John Carpenter Club Mark Stockton, current president John Gee-Grnat and LES Fives club organiser, Jivan Navani.
We were photographed by OC Paul Hawkes, who won the public schools championship in 1969.
Great thanks are due to Ronald Pattison, a great friend of the club and the MCC member who made dinner at this splendid venue possible, and to Stephen Kelly, who masterminded the whole operation.