Sports Fair Preview Part 1: Big Sports on Campus
Daniel Dunford gives us the low down on the most popular Brum sports.
From 12-5 on the 25th of September, the Sports Fair gets underway at the Munrow Centre. With hundreds of fellow freshers descending to choose which of the 53 sports on offer to go for, this first part of a bear-all exposé should give elite athletes and keen amateurs alike all they need to decide which sport to pledge their allegiance to.
Football: Men’s Captains Jack Hulin/Jonny Piggott; Women’s Captain Izzy Christiansen.
Boasting three 11 a side teams and a futsal team, Brum’s male football squad have been successful in recent years: the 1sts narrowly missed out on promotion to the northern championship, and the 3rds secured back-to-back promotions by winning the Midlands 3A Division.
The women’s squad contains two teams, one of which reached the semi-finals of the BUCS Championships, and achieved development club of the year at the UoBSports Awards last year. To join either team, sign up for trials at the Sports Fair, though taking part in the men’s trials will set you back £5.
Rugby: Men’s Union Captain George Coombes, Men’s League Captain Jack Sloman; Women’s Union Captain Sam Voyle.
The men’s Rugby Union squad has four teams, including a Freshers XV. The 1sts are coached by Samoan World Cup veteran Mike Umaga, and enjoy a notoriously active social schedule, including a ‘mystery tour’ abroad, and regular themed nights.
Once again, check out the Sports Fair for details or speak to the captains, whose details are available via the UoB Sport site.
Cricket: Men’s Captain Simon Lockett, Women’s Captain Natalie Samuels.
With Edgbaston just next door, both teams continue the trend of Birmingham success. With 4 squads, there is cricket for all abilities at Birmingham.
Members often have the chance to ground-staff at Test and ODI matches at Edgbaston, and even provided net bowlers for the England v West Indies ODI in 2009. Check out the Sports Fair for details on trials.
Hockey: Chairman Tom Beaumont; Men’s Captain Will Selfe; Women’s Captain Katy Lavelle
The hockey team have four teams for each sex, with a total squad of over 160. They play in BUCS leagues and Saturday club leagues, and claim to be the most successful University Hockey Club in the Country after taking three teams to BUCS finals last year, and bringing home a gold medal. So if you’re looking to whack sticks with the very best, head to the hockey stand to sign up at the Sports Fair on the 25th.
Gymnastics & Trampolining: Gymnastics Captain Steph Holden; Trampolining Captain Alex Peart.
The Gymanastics UK Coach of the Year 2013, Yunjia Lau, welcomes novices learning their first cartwheels alongside the established bouncers and tumblers that achieved silver and bronze medals in the women’s and men’s BUCS team events last year. Check out last year’s second biggest University club at the Sports Fair for details.
Netball: Club Captain Philly Koehli
Netball is the biggest sport for women at UoB, with a history of success and has four teams in BUCS leagues. The active social secs work hard to organise events including the end of season ball and an annual tour, often alongside other teams.
Athletics & Cross Country: Club Captain Molly Browne
Whilst Birmingham’s atheletics team can boast of hosting the current female BUCS Cross Country and Decathlon Champions; the runners up in the male and female Indoor Athletics team categories; the men’s Outdoor Athletics team bronze medallists; and even a European U20s 5000m medallist, it also has a social group (Cool Runnings) that compete and train more casually. Because of this, anyone is welcome to join un-trialled and sample the track that blunted Usain Bolt’s blades before the Olympics in 2012.