Varsity is back! The first clash of 2018 is Super Wednesday on 25th April at David Ross Sports Village. This, the first of two Super Wednesdays, will include a host of teams showcasing UoN Sport talent and competing for the first* blood of the series. The Green and Gold are looking to emulate an emphatic whitewash of Trent in 2017, and Impact spoke to some of the athletes eagerly waiting to step out onto home soil.
UoN are defending their unbeaten record in the Varsity swimming, which is the longest unbeaten record of any sport participating this year. Men’s captain James Newton spoke about his expectations for Super Wednesday:
“We will be aiming to make it our 10th consecutive victory, but with Trent fielding arguably their strongest team in recent years, it promises to be a much more competitive meeting.”
“We’ll have two of our scholars racing tomorrow, Polly and Keira. We hopefully should win the relays because we have quite a lot of depth in our squad, which we don’t think Trent will have. But we are expecting a closer event than we’ve had in previous years.”
Water Polo have also had an impressive year. They’ve not only beaten Trent both times when playing them in the league but were also winners of the BUCS Men’s Trophy, beating Manchester 12-6. Men’s captain George Sadler highlighted what has shaken up the contest in the year since UoN’s win in 2017:
“The difference last year was that they weren’t in our league. We’ve now already played them twice, so we know how each other play. Despite beating them twice, coming back from Easter and the impact on training should make it closer”
#NottsVarsity kicks off with Super Wednesday at the David Ross Sport Village tomorrow ?
If you're planning on coming along, here's when and where you can be at the heart of the action ?? pic.twitter.com/qp2rCLOJYE
— UoN Students' Union (@UoNSU) April 24, 2018
One of the key UoN success to come out of BUCS Big Wednesday was table tennis, with the men’s second team winning the BUCS Men’s Trophy and the first team thrashing UCL 10-0 to win the BUCS Men’s Championship, having beaten Trent in the Semis. Adam Harrison said that “the format of the games is designed so the matches are shorter to try and even the playing field a bit. Despite this, I expect us to be a lot stronger down the order, particularly at positions 3 and 4, and we are confident and looking forward to repeating last year’s Varsity success.”
Badminton are looking for another Varsity win, with president Becky Blair saying “we have a very good track record against Trent and usually only enter our 2nd or 3rd women’s team in order to make it a bit more competitive. It’s also worth noting that there are two brothers playing against each other, Harry Arksey is a UoN scholar and his brother Jed is a Trent scholar, which definitely spices things up a bit”.
Volleyball’s Anna Macleod commented on the format of the event, with all the Super Wednesday clubs competing for a solitary point in the series:
“I wasn’t that happy when I found out about that [Volleyball being moved from a standalone event], I understand why they’re doing it but we work just as hard as every other sport to get a win or to get a result and it seems a bit unfair that we’re not contributing as much but I do understand why they do it.”
“To move it to DRSV, hopefully, we can expect a good turnout for us this year so we get a better turnout at our national league games and in the long run be moved back up to a main series”
Handball president and men’s captain Charlie Swan expects a strong showing from Danny Ramos, “our centre from Spain who came over last year for his PhD” and “an exceptional player.”
“Our right winger, Ben Howard is a GB international. In our women’s team, look out for Louise Vinger, who has increased her game massively this year.”
Anthony Marsh, president of Fencing, predicts “a tough year this year”, highlighting that “our men’s first aren’t available through competing in the playoffs”, but believes that the Green and Gold will just edge it.
*the series starts at 1-0 to NTU, after UoN Football forfeited their fixture.
Interviews by Tom Monks, Alex Riggs, Jimmy Moorhouse and Zoe Burgess