Varsity Match Analysis

As I was shirking work today I decided to hunt for some of the missing varsity results, and I’m please to day I found results and descriptions for  several more years. See the results here.

I also decided to do some analysis on the results (because that’s what I do). The data is still a bit patchy but we have results for 22 varsity matches in the last 28 years, only one year (1996) is confirmed as cancelled the other year are missing.

Of those 22 matches Oxford won 13 (59%) and Cambridge 8 (36%) where was one draw (1992), so unfortunately Oxford have a healthy lead at the moment.  Interestingly 75% of the matches we know the location of (16 in total) have been a RAF Bicester.  Five matches have no location information and one was based on the Cross-Country Ladder for that year.

So is Oxford benefiting from a Home Advantage?

Let’s look at the results, I have excluded the 1992 draw

Cambridge win at Home: 2

Cambridge win Away: 3

Oxford win at Home: 8

Oxford win Away: 2

This means that Oxford have a 72% chance of winning at home but only 50% chance of winning away. This suggests that Oxford do indeed have a home advantage, but Cambridge does not benefit from any home advantage. Big caveat is that this small sample size means that and conclusion should be taken with a pinch of salt. But what if there was an even distribution of locations for the varsity match. We would then expect that Oxford would win 61% of the Varsity matches rather than 59%, so the good news is that Oxford really do seem to benifit from a home advantage and a greater number of matches at Bicester.

The bad news is that the next varsity match is a RAF Bicester