by Arjun Rakesh, Arjun Velmurugan, GV Kaushik and Raghavi Kodati
Ganga, with the highest number of championships in Schroeter history, lifted yet another trophy this year defeating Defending champions Tapti closely. While Ganga accumulated 46 points with Gold in Hockey and Athletics, Tapti followed at 42 points from Gold in Weightlifting and multiple second-place finishes. A detailed points table can be found below.
Among this year’s highlights are, emergence of freshie hostel Pampa as Cricket winner, Alak’s gold winning run over Ganga in Football, and Ganga’s own extravagant victories in Hockey and Athletics. In the newly constituted Women’s Schroeter amongst the girls’ hostels, Sabarmati lifted the first ever trophy.
Scroll down to see sport-wise results.
This year’s Cricket Schroeter was full of surprises. To begin with, both the finalists – Pampa and Alak – lost their first matches in the tournament. Another major surprise was Narmad, insti cricket’s powerhouse getting knocked out in the league stage by eventual winners, Pampa. While defending champion Alak’s path to the finals was a total team effort with strategic bowling, fielding and batting, freshie hostel Pampa rode on breathtaking individual performances. A.R.Sriram, Pampa’s captain scored three fifties in the tournament, aggregating 244 runs at an average of 81.33. He was ably supported by their vice-captain, Siva Prakash and this year’s highest wicket taker, Srikanth (16 wickets). Alak, led by Tirth Shah, faltered under pressure in the finals to concede victory to Pampa by 14 runs.
Pampa’s victory though, was remarkable just for the fact that it was entirely a freshie team and that most of them were playing “red-ball cricket” for the very first time. Sindhu finished third beating Krishna in the third place play-off.
Alak won the football schroeter in a closely contested final, Mubeen’s Zidan-esque volley sealing the deal for the blues. Ganga came runners-up for the second time in the last two years, losing to Alak 0-1. Mandak finished third beating Sharav, who played their first ever football semifinal in Schroeter history. Led by Abdussalam Tk and Aneesh Bhagwat, Alak’s team has had a brilliant run this year – what with a strong main team and bench reserve, an exceptional keeper in Vivek Yadlapalli and a brilliant attack comprising of Anand Babu, Mubeen and Parikshit Goenka.
Ganga’s hostel team comprising of many Inter-IIT veterans like Package, Kass, Anil et al won the finals with a solid 4-1 against Tapti, fending off Narmad in the semis with a scoreline that read 6-0. In the other semi-final, Tapti beat last year champions Saras by a 2-0 margin. In the bronze playoffs, Saras bagged third place with a comprehensive 4-0 rout of Narmad.
This year’s Basketball Schroeter saw Alak, Ganga, Godav and Mandak qualify to the top four places with 4-times champions Saras getting surprisingly knocked out in the league stage. Godav beat Mandak and Alak beat Ganga in the semis to reach the finals which saw intense spells of the game.
The finals was crucial for Godav as they needed this 10 points to keep their Schroeter winning hopes alive. However, by the end of first quarter, they were trailing by 0-14. While they managed to equalise this by 3rd quarter, the momentum dipped after that. In the early minutes of the 4th quarter, Alak managed to build a healthy lead which proved to be unassailable for Godav. In their desperate attempt to reduce the gap , Godav gave away even more baskets to cede victory to Alak by over 10 points.
In the third place playoffs, Mandak defeated Ganga to win Bronze
This year’s badminton finals was eerily similar to last year’s. Defending champions, Mahanadi triumphed over all time favourites, Tapti in a very close match. The odds kept swinging from one side to the other throughout the match. The last game, which happens to be the second men’s doubles, was a nerve wracker, stretching to the third set. It was a nail biter as Mahanadi edged Tapti 3-2.
Mohan Kumar(Mahanadi) beat Bhargav(Tapti) in the first match. Institute men’s team captain, P.Krishna Kanth then beat Mahanadi captain, Mithun Jyoti in straight sets. In the first doubles, Krishna Kanth/Hari Pavan(T) beat Mithun/Mohan(M). The next match had a freshie, Vinyl Kiran(M) up against Tapti captain, Hari Pavan(T). Vinyl Kiran triumphed in straight sets. The match was evenly poised leading to the decider. In the last match, Chirag/Vinyl of Mahanadi beat Tanmay/Bhargav of Tapti in a tense 3-setter.
Table Tennis finals was contested by Narmad and defending champions, Mandak . It was a relatively low key affair as none of the contesting hostels had any chance of winning the overall Schroeter. Narmad triumphed over Mandak 3-2. Mandak’s inability to field more than 2 players was a setback to them in the finals. In the play-offs for the third place, Mahanadi beat Ganga 3-2.
This year’s tennis schroeter sprang a lot of surprises. Last year’s champions Godav crashed out in the initial rounds as most of their main players graduated last year. Favourites Saras lost to a spirited Jam, who eventually won the Schroeter. In the first semifinals, Jam beat Saras 2-0. Though the scoreline suggests otherwise, it was a closely contested match with each match going to the third set. In the other semifinal, Alak beat freshie team Pampa 2-0.
In the finals, Jam beat Alak 2-1. The first match pitted next year’s Institute captain, Alak’s Vivek Yadlapalli against this year’s captain, Rohit Gunuganti of Jam, with Vivek winning 4-6, 7-6, 7-5 in a tightly contested fashion. However, Jam clinched the next two matches to go on to win the Schroeter. In the playoff for the third place Pampa got a walkover over Saras.
Saras won the Squash gold beating Godav 2-1, thanks to some brilliant work by Vikas Yelagandula and Ankit. In the semifinals, Saras defeated Narmad 2-1 to face Godav in the final who beat Tapti enroute to the final. Third place was bagged by Narmad who won over Tapti 2-0
Jam lost the Swimming Schroeter in many years to Godav, who consistently accumulated wins to finish at 44 points. Tapti came close behind at second place with 40 points.
Notable individual performance came from Akshay Krishna, this year’s Best Outgoing Swimmer, who won gold in all the four individual events he participated in, besides a silver in 4×100 relay. Aditya Malpani of Godav clinched 6 medals – 3 gold , 2 silver and a bronze. Karthik Tyagi from Tapti, also Institute water polo captain, dug up 3 gold medals and a bronze, completely dominated in his primary stroke – freestyle. Fellow Tapti swimmer, Sai Shankar dug up 1 gold, 2 silver and 3 bronze. Anand Parikh from Narmad, another Inter-IIT veteran, also had a brilliant schroeter winning 5 medals – 1 gold, 3 silver and 1 bronze. Vishvajeet Nagargoje, Saras’s water polo captain, also earned five medals with 1 gold 2 silver and 2 bronze medals.
Unsurprisingly, the same people led their hostel teams to top four positions in Water Polo. In the semi finals, Narmad defeated Jam 8-2 to secure a berth in the final, while Tapti beat Saras 4-3 in the other semis. The final between favourites – Narmad and Tapti – saw a nail biting finish to another great season of Water polo as Anand Parikh-led Narmad beat Kartik Tyagi-led Tapti in the final by 9-7. In the third place play-offs, a Vishvajeet Nagargoje led Saras placed third beating a Akshay Krishna propelled Jam 6-4.
The number of participating hostels rose to 10 this year – an unprecedented number in the past. Brahmaputra, Mahanadi and Pampa were among the many first-timers. Although they did not qualify to the later stages, they gained useful match experience.
This year’s Volleyball Schroeter saw a lot of evenly matched teams. The semi-finalists were Tapti, Tambi, Jam and defending champions, Godav. The Godav vs Tambi semi-finals had two strong teams pitted against each other, thus proving to be an engrossing match. While Tambi defeated Godav , Tapti defeated Jam to progress to the finals – which seemed as a repeat of a league stage match. Tambi emerged victorious with a scoreline of 3-0, although all the sets were intensely fought. In the third place playoffs, Godav won over Jam to take home bronze.
With a team comprising of 3 insti lifters, Tapti bagged a comfortable gold this year. Tapti got a total of 17 points followed by Ganga (11 points) and Krishna (9 points) in second and third positions respectively. Mandak came fourth with 7 points. Sai Prakash from Tapti went on to secure the Best lifter title.
Athletics plays a big role in deciding the overall Schroeter champion as it fetches the winning hostel 20 points unlike the usual 10 points in the other sports. As such, there was heavy competition between the athletics giants – Mandak, Godav and Ganga. The competition was so intense, that the second and third positions were determined only in the final relay. In the end Ganga emerged triumphant as champions with a whooping 27 point lead, followed by Godav, Mandak and Saras in 2nd, 3rd and 4th places respectively.
The race for overall champion (men) however was less intense, with Bipin Babu winning a total of 33 points, leading Praveen Kumar(Bolt), this year’s Best Outgoing Sportsperson, by 9 points. In the women’s category Vijaya Ramanathan secured the individual champion title with 30 points.
Bipin, who is also the current Institute Sports Secretary, says that the “PG hostels have performed well this time. But, the freshie hostels have largely remained inactive – there was no good enough participation or performance. Only one freshie team, from Pampa, secured silver in 4x400m relay.” He adds, “There are many passouts from this year’s institute athletics team. It’s only through events such as Schroeter will we find suitable people to replace them. More people should take interest in Schroeter as it is a gateway to Inter-IIT.”
This is true not just of Athletics, but of all sports. Schroeter has always been a platform to hone new talent. “Exceptionally talented athletes are graduating this year and the biggest hope that IIT-M has is to find students who love the sport equally and are committed to train long and hard.”, adds Harsh Shah, a member of the institute athletics team and outgoing Brahmaputra Sport Sec.
The presence of relaxed rules for women in Schroeter is a heavily contested issue, with several men and women athletes uncomfortable about the fairness of the idea. As a much-needed alternative and long-term solution, Women’s Schroeter was started off between Sharav, Sarayu and the new girls hostel, Sabarmati. This first edition included only four sports – Badminton, Swimming, TT and Kho-Kho. PG hostels – Sarayu and Sabarmati fielded strong teams alongside a largely UG Sharav. Sabarmati emerged as the first Women’s Schroeter champions.
Badminton saw the highest participation amongst all sports – with all hostels managing two teams of two players each. Chethana Rao of Sabarmati did not lose a single set in all their matches and together with Anna, secured Gold for the hostel. Sharav secured the second and third places, followed by Sarayu in the fourth.
Swimming was totally dominated Dorothee of Sarayu and Gayathri Sambamoorthy of Sabarmati, as they ended up clinching the first two places in most of the events. Assisted with Margot, another foreign exchange student, Sarayu finished first followed by Sabarmati and Sharav.
Owing to limited participation, TT was played in a singles format. Sharav, fielding two institute team players, comfortably clinched the first two places finishing first overall. Sarayu followed at the second place
Kho-Kho saw Sabarmati giving a walkover to Sharav as Sharav could not field a team at the time of the match.
Overall, there’s a lot of scope to improve the organization of the Women’s Schroeter. Ranjani Srinivasan, captain of the Sharav badminton team, felt that it was a hurried affair and there was no commendable participation in all the sports. She however adds that, “Integration with the institute sports calendar and sustained effort from the secretaries and captains involved will give a tremendous push to Women’s Schroeter – and to the overall women’s sports scenario in insti.”
T5E would like to thank the Institute Sport Secretary, Bipin Babu, and the many captains and hostel sport secretaries whom we spoke to, for inputs on their respective sports.