Thursday 9th May 2013
Last weekend brought around the British Rowing Championships and the simple question was could our rowers bring home the National Title for the tenth year in a row? The athletes’ views seemed to range from the fact that it would be very tough; to this year could well be a bridge too far. What we did know for certain was that of the 46 Universities taking part the big guns of Imperial, Oxford Brookes, UL (University of London), Newcastle, Oxford and Cambridge were all out in force.
Despite all the pressure Durham had a good first day but it was all too clear that the students were correct this was going to be very tough as at the end of day one the Victor Ludorum scores were as follows: Imperial 410, DUBC 384, UL 282, and Newcastle 208. An excellent Imperial squad started day two with a bang but a late surge from Durham left the end of day scores as Imperial 722, Durham 720, UL 558 and Newcastle 522.
And so to the final day where once again Imperial got out of the traps the quickest. Normally we check VL scores at the end of the day but today it was after every final. With five finals to go Durham finally edged into the lead and with more points awarded in the VL to championship races than intermediate and novices, and with four races to go, it was down to the women’s championship coxless four and the men’s championship quad. Our women held on brilliantly to win gold from Imperial, in second, by 2.83 seconds and our very strong men’s coxed four won gold pushing Imperial into 4th. Defeats followed to Imperial in the last two finals but we were in both finals and scoring points and so there was no way back for the Londoners.
The final Victor Ludorum scores read as follows: Durham 1114, Imperial 1058, UL 786 and Newcastle 758, the closest finish for ten years! Over recent years the Palatinates have been criticised for failing to win major medals and relying too heavily on depth to win the British University title but this year we won 8 Championship golds, more than any other university, we topped the medal table with 22 medals to Imperial’s 17 and Newcastle’s 15 and most importantly we scored more BUCS points than anyone else. With the exception of our win in Strathclyde in 2008, when many of the southern universities refused to travel, this was our highest ever points return.
Huge congratulations to our coaches, the medical support team to our S+C support team, to our many helpers who kept the athletes fed and watered for three days, to our supporters and most of all to our athletes.
This was a squad of athletes who, when not on the water, were at the water side shouting for the Palatinate boat coming down the 2000 metre course. The pictures of the presentation ceremony show utter jubilation and celebration! This was truly a united squad where if one athlete led, others would follow and when one of the athletes was thrown off the pontoon at the end, all seventy athletes followed and among the screams and hilarity came a chant of ‘DUBC, DUBC’. As the chant floated out across the water to all the opposition clubs loading their boats for a return home this was definitely a time to be wearing Palatinate.
Congratulations to all our rowers and to all the athletes, coaches, support staff, alumni and parent supporters of the last nine years in helping to land 10 British University titles!
Results: Durham qualified for 34 of the 44 finals
Championship Gold medals: Women’s coxless four, lightweight coxless four and the lightweight pair. Men’s coxed four, quad, double, pair and single scull.
Championship Silver Medals: women’s lightweight eight, lightweight double and men’s lightweight quad.
Championship Bronze Medals: women’s double. Men’s lightweight coxless four and double.
Intermediate Gold Medals: women’s single and men’s single.
Intermediate Silver Medals: men’s pair and lightweight single.
Intermediate Bronze Medal: women’s lightweight single.
Novice Gold Medals: women’s eight and men’s coxed four.
Novice silver medal: Men’s eight.
This was a huge weekend with Durham contesting the rowing and Birmingham the athletics. BUCS points won: Durham rowing 229, and Birmingham athletics 110!
Elsewhere our men’s triathlon finished an excellent fourth in the national championships and in front of Birmingham – well done to them.
Finally, Lucy Butt (Josephine Butler) and Peter Bray (Van Mildert) both won the under twenty British Long Orienteering Championships and have been selected for the Junior World Orienteering Championships in the Czech Republic in July of this year. Huge congratulations to them!
Friday 3rd May 2013
The British University points table has been up-dated and Durham has moved to 2950 points but they are still owed 60 points and as such the Palatinates have hit the magical 3000 points for the second time in our history. Only Bath and Loughborough have ever achieved 3000 points on more than one occasion. Huge congratulations to our athletes and coaches!
Our sailors will be pleased with their final results with our yachting team finishing 4th at Portsmouth and our match racing team finishing 5th at Weymouth.
Our women’s cricket team have been unlucky to find themselves playing Loughborough in two consecutive matches and in their first match they found it tough going away from home. The Loughborough women had asked to be moved into the men’s leagues this year which perhaps reflects their significant strength. They scored 270 for 7 and in return Durham ended the day on 139 for 8 with an excellent 57 from Caroline Jameson. We will certainly take some positives from the game.
The return game followed a similar pattern except that Durham batted first. The Palatinates scored a steady 153 but the opposition were able to reach their target for the loss of just one wicket.
Our men’s 1st team took on the in-form team of the year so far in Leeds/Bradford and with a significantly weakened pace attack conceded 272 in the opposition’s fifty overs. Durham responded magnificently with a hugely impressive century from captain Chris Jones but this did not prevent the Palatinates falling to their first one day defeat of the season losing by 14 runs.
The men’s 2nds looked well set but a middle order collapse left Durham on 165 all out before the Palatinates hit back with the ball securing an 81 run victory against Sheffield 1st team to keep them at the top of their league. The 3rds were equally impressive away against Newcastle 2nds, bowling their opposition out for 146. Durham knocked the runs off in thirty overs for the loss of four wickets with Ollie Davies scoring 78 and also move top of their league.
I am finally in a position to wrap up the hockey season and what a season it has been! Nothing has changed with the 1st and 2nds. In their respective National North Leagues the women finished 2nd and the men finished 3rd. Our second teams both play in Premiership North and the women finished 2nd, by far our best ever result at this level, and the men finished a highly creditable 6th=.
The women’s 3rds are already North East Division 2 champions in their unbeaten season – magnificent! The men’s 3rds secured a little help from their friends at the death. They drew 5-5 with Medics before putting Wilton to the sword in an 8-1 win. The 4th team recorded a magnificent 4-3 win over second placed Richmond meaning that the 3rds became North East Premier League champions on goal difference from Richmond! It was clearly help a friend week! The 4ths finished the year in 4th place in the same league as the 3rds – another excellent year for them. The women’s 4ths finished second in their league with a game in hand over the top club but with no time to play their final fixture – a great shame but an excellent year.
Friday 26th April 2013
Term three has started and our summer sports sprang out of the traps in magnificent form as the Palatinates set their stall out to hold on to the much coveted second place in the final run in. There were outstanding performances in rowing, cricket, rugby sevens, canoe polo and the London Marathon
The weekend provided an excellent base for our rowers as they prepare for the British University regatta in a fortnight’s time. The performance of the day came from Angus Groom as he finished first in the GB under 23 category and an excellent 9th overall. Barney Stentiford also finished fifth and William Mace 10th in the under 23’s. There was also a fifth place in the men’s coxless pairs for Calum McBrierty and Francis Highton.
Our former students also had an outstanding day with Will Fletcher and Lou Reeve both finishing fourth in the A finals. Phil Congdon won the B final in the coxless pair and Lucinda Gooderham finished third in the B final.
A real highlight of the weekend came in the British University Canoe Polo Championships. One may have been forgiven for thinking that a pool was an essential requirement for this sport but Durham made light work of this handicap and took on the big water based Universities.
Pride of place goes to our women who performed outstandingly throughout with results as follows: Durham 5 Cambridge 0, Durham 6 ULU 2, Durham 0 Loughborough 2, Durham 4 Cardiff 1, Durham 3 Southampton 1, Durham 3 Bristol 2. With only one defeat the Palatinates were matched again against Loughborough in the final and eventually lost out 6-3. Another national final for Durham!
The men were not far behind as they too performed outstandingly: Durham 3 Surrey 0, Durham 7 Bath 0, Durham 4 Nottingham 3, Durham 2 Sheffield 0, Durham 2 Sheffield Hallam 4 and finally a defeat in the semi-final Durham 2 Warwick 4 meant the men came away with bronze medals. A special mention for scholar Beth Barratt who won silver in the women’s event and after every game got back in her canoe to help the men win bronze – remarkable!
Do we have strength in depth in this sport? Yes we do! Our men’s 2nds walked away with the second team competition winning every game: Durham 6 Cambridge 0, Durham 4 UWE 0, Durham 3 Cardiff 0, Durham 2 Nottingham 1, Durham 4 Southampton 0 and finally Durham 3 Cardiff 2. Gold medals!
Congratulations to Megan Ellery and Sophie Lee who have both been selected for the emerging England 7s rugby squad. Talking of 7s our men started their preparation for the defence of their British University title by taking part in the Newcastle Town sevens. The Palatinates were rarely troubled as they made it through to the final where they hoped they might get a serious run out from Newcastle University but a final score of Durham 63 Newcastle 5 was hardly the workout we wanted.
Congratulations to Dan Jenkins who ran in the London Marathon this weekend. BUCS use this as their marathon in terms of university points and Dan won the individual silver medal being the second student home in a fantastic time of 2 hours and 34 minutes.
Durham found it tough going against a full strength Nottingham County side but this was another game providing excellent experience for the players as they prepared for the University season. Nottingham scored 396 for 4 before bowing the University out for 142. The County went on to score 408 for 9 in their second innings before dismissing the Palatinates for 121. Freddie Van Den Bergh will have been pleased with his 4 for 84 in the Nottingham second innings and first year Chaitanya Bishnoi scored a highly accomplished second fifty following on from the Durham game scoring 54 and 25 in his first and second innings respectively.
The Palatines will have been pleased to get back to BUCS cricket and the club had an outstanding two days. First up was Southampton and the opposition won the toss, chose to bat, and got off to a very good start. Durham pulled their opposition back to 167 for 4 off 43 before conceding heavily in the final seven overs leaving Southampton on a healthy 232 for 9.
The Palatinates started brilliantly reaching 103 for 0 off 20 overs but the loss of captain Chris Jones for 65 rather slowed the chase down. In fairness to our batting line up we paced the chase extremely well with a magnificent 94 from Ivo Hobson as the Palatinates won their first BUCS Championship match by seven wickets with two overs remaining.
It was then up the road to the Dark Blues of Oxford where again the opposition chose to bat. The Palatinates bowled well early on and had Oxford 91 for 5 before a mini recovery allowed Oxford to reach 203 for 9 off their fifty overs. The Durham opener’s followed on from Southampton putting on 81 and the Palatinates never looked back as the Dark Blues fell to an eight wicket defeat. Chris Jones 42, Ivo Hobson 81 – another great knock - and Rishabh Shah 60.
Our women took to the field in their first Premiership cricket game against Leeds. Their opponents started well reaching 105 for 1 before being dismissed in a catastrophic collapse ending on 122 with Fiona Abraham taking 7 for 22. The Palatinates never looked troubled in the chase scoring the runs for the loss of two wickets with Elysa Hubbard scoring 66 not out. This is a very strong Durham side!
The 2nds made light work of Manchester 3rds, as might be expected, as the Palatinates scored 226 for nine, Sam Evison 57, before bowling their opposition out for 102. The day was rounded off with a full house for cricket as the 3rds scored 262 for 9, James Madox-Jones 62 and bowled York St Johns 1st team out for 104. A great start all round!
Monday 8th April 2013
Despite near winter conditions the summer sport programme has begun as the University has now played their first County cricket match and there are also some winter programme results to wrap up.
Before looking at the matches played it is worth taking time out to see where Team Durham is positioned at Easter in the BUCS points table.
Suffice it to say that their 1000 + points gained from swimming and athletics yet again places Loughborough in a different league to everyone else but the Palatinates are still very much in there fighting for second place.
Loughborough 4267, Durham 2733, Birmingham 2567, Bath 2364 and Exeter 2216. With points still to be added and some of Durham’s strongest sports still to come it looks as though the race for second will now be between Durham and Birmingham this year.
The excellent news for Durham can be seen in the team sport table where Durham is ranked number one in women’s sport, some 150 points in front of Loughborough and we are just managing to hold on to second behind Loughborough in the men’s team sports. Holding on to these rankings would be a magnificent achievement!
Durham Wildcats basketball played their final games of the year this weekend. Friday night saw them travel to Mersey where they recorded a 100-87 win. On Sunday they played their final game of the year against Manchester Giants in front of a very loyal and vocal fan base. Much to the disappointment of the crowd the Wildcats, having been level at half time, lost out 114-92.
This is our second year in the BBL and having finished bottom last year with three wins, this year was a massive improvement for the team. Ten wins and tenth place evidences we are beginning to get it right and we can look forward to next season with real confidence.
The snowsports season continues and so does the success of captain Charlie Bullock as he recorded his third BUCS gold of the year this time in the snow board GS. There was also a ninth place for Jojo Carew in the individual slalom and eighth for Tom Heath in the Snowboard GS. Not to be out done the girls finished 2nd in the ladies dual slalom, an excellent result for them.
It is now officially summer as Durham University took on Durham County in the first of our First Class matches. Not an easy challenge as this was the first time any of our players had seen grass in 2013 making our preparation anything but ideal. In fairness the County had not done much better. The University lost one of their strike bowlers injured and out for the season in a net session in the early part of the week – not a good start!
The University bowling attack started well reducing the County to 90 for 3 at lunch but the County batted soundly from there on recording a score of 426 for 9. In reply the University lost some early wickets very cheaply but batted through to 176 all out with first year Chaitanya Bishnoi scoring an excellent 60. The County chose to use the three day game to get players to the crease and did not force the follow on scoring 244 for 1 in their second innings with former Durham University Captain, Will Smith, scoring 101 not out. The University batted out time finishing on 155 for 5 with captain Chris Jones scoring 43 and Rishabh Shah scoring an excellent 57 not out. Given our preparation time outdoors the Palatinates will be happy with this first outing.
Monday 25th March 2013
The men’s Head of the River in London was cancelled because the Thames was deemed too dangerous, the water polo and futsal finals were cancelled due to dangerous road conditions but at Twickenham it was just very, very cold!
It was a Sunday, the train station at Twickenham was closed but this did not stop the Palatinates assembling our biggest crowd in three years and so creating our own 16th player – more of the crowd later.
The players made history earning their right to be ranked alongside the ‘invincibles’ of 2011 as Durham secured a second unbeaten season with only one defeat in three years! All twenty two players got on to play their part in a fast and physical encounter and all twenty two players stood up to be counted.
If we were in any doubt about the challenge ahead this was laid to rest as Cardiff lined up alongside the Palatinates and the difference in the size of the packs was all too obvious. The first twenty minutes of the game however belonged to Durham as their drive maul moved up to twenty metres at a time and the backs played some wonderfully fast flowing rugby resulting in a superb try in the corner. The only surprise in the first twenty minutes was an excellent cross kick by Cardiff which led to a superbly worked try of their own. A penalty before half time for Durham sent the players in with a deserved 10-5 half time lead that could have been more.
Durham raced out of the blocks in the second half and a drive over try together with a conversion and another penalty from the magnificent boot of Dave Treglown gave the Palatinates a 20-8 lead. From there on in Durham’s defence was tested to the full as Cardiff drove again and again at Durham and the two sides exchanged more penalties taking the score to 23-17 with ten minutes of injury time to play. It was a very long ten minutes but it was Durham who played their pick and go rugby, keeping the ball in the pack, who secured the vital penalty to take the score to 26-17, cue a final whistle and mass celebrations.
This was a great day for Durham rugby at the centre piece of BUCS sport at Twickenham. Special mentions for club captain Tom Yaxley, for team captain Josh Beaumont, he will never forget his 21st birthday, for Josh again, Harrison, Fred and Jack who lost only one game in three years, for man of the match Simon Hammersley and of course for all twenty two players on the day. Special mentions also for Alex Keay and his coaching team, to our strength and conditioning coaches, our doctor and physio and of course a special mention to our supporters.
Thanks to our alumni across many years, to our staff, to many of our present students who made the journey and to parents and friends. I am not sure I agree with our supporters, who for the last fifteen minutes sang ‘can we play you every week’! There is a big debate about the strength of rugby in the South over the North but having played Bath, Exeter and Cardiff I think it might be best to say that the Palatinates beat some very good sides!
Elsewhere it was BBL time and Durham basketball has moved a long way in two years. The last place we would have wanted to go last year would have been Newcastle Eagles but with 12 seconds to go we were two points down before losing out 96-92 – a great effort. On Sunday we took on high flying Surrey Heat on our Sky game and will have been disappointed to lose out 99-87 in a game where we had the better of the early exchanges.
Finally, a special mention for our women’s 2nds hockey who beat York in mid-week 2-0 to secure a remarkable 2nd place in the Northern Premier League of women’s hockey – our best ever finishing position for this team by some considerable way!
Thursday 21st March 2013
The week started on Monday for the Palatinates in Cardiff as our women’s rugby first team were unlucky to draw the favourites away from home in the semi-final of the BUCS Championship. The game was delayed to the Monday as Cardiff Met had five players out playing at full international level and so we were in no doubt what to expect.
The first half was really difficult for the Palatinates as Durham trailed 22-0 going in to the break but this is a side that has always known how to stand up and be counted and a final score of Cardiff Met 41 Durham 19 shows the Palatinates fought back with real pride to share the second half spoils. A wonderful year for Durham’s women! Bring on the sevens!
On Tuesday it was off to Leeds for our women’s 2nds tennis who once again took on Loughborough 2nds in the Trophy Final. In the two doubles Durham won both first sets with ease but found it tough from there on winning the top doubles 10-6 on a tie break and the other 7-6 in the second.
The singles were staggered due to court space and Durham were made to work for every point winning at one after more than two hours with a 7-5 tie break win in the third and winning at two in yet another tie break in the third 7-4. Durham played out and won the dead rubbers at 3 and 4 to end with a result of Durham 2nds 12 Loughborough 2nds 0. Congratulations to all!
Wednesday saw Durham in action in six of their eight national finals. If winning at semi-final level is a tough ask winning in a championship final is an even tougher ask! My thanks to all the students, staff, alumni and parents who supported the Palatinates across the sports.
Having had the privilege of moving between the matches I can safely say that there wasn’t one Durham athlete who did not leave everything on the pitch or on the court. Their response and reaction in victory and in defeat proved that they desperately cared about both the result and the team they played for. The Team Durham staff, who were out in force, were extremely proud to have had the chance to work with all of our athletes this year.
It started with tennis as our men took on the mighty, unbeaten Stirling, who arrived with the same team that won the Championship last year. Men’s and women’s Tennis have been hit all year with illness and our cause was not helped by our number two falling ill immediately before the final. Durham desperately needed a doubles win and our first pair came as close as it gets winning the first set before losing the second to four and then losing 10-6 in the crucial tie break. This was a very rare defeat for our first pair who have had a brilliant year. Our second pair lost 6-4 and 6-4.
In the singles, at number one, it was a repeat of the individual singles final where Durham lost out again 6-4, 6-3 in another marathon of two hours of outstanding tennis. We went on to lose in close encounters throughout 6-4, 6-4 at two, 6-4, 6-3 at three and 6-4, 6-1 at four. Final score overall, Stirling 12 - Durham 0. A special mention for the two players who moved up to cover for illness – a great effort by both!
From men’s tennis it was off to Men’s lacrosse. Like all our finalists on this Wednesday the planning to win the national title started last March. This turned out to be a ruthless display from the Palatinates who simply decided not to give Loughborough the ball and when we had possession the end product was delivered time and time again. Three wins in three years for Durham with the final score Durham 21 – Loughborough 2. Huge congratulations to Durham! A devastating performance!
And so to the next door pitch as Durham took on Cambridge in the women’s lacrosse. This was always going to be close as the Northern Premier League Champions took on the Southern Premier League Champions. Durham had the better of the early exchanges but there were perhaps three defining periods of this game. The first came with Durham 2-1 up with the Palatinates seemingly scoring an excellent third goal only to have it ruled out for an infringement off the ball. The second came either side of half time when Durham had five players yellow carded and sent from the field – no doubting the Durham commitment! The third came with the score at 4-4 when Durham really did have a number of opportunities to take control but the Cambridge last line of defence held firm. The final score of Cambridge 7 Durham 4 was harsh on the Palatinates and I don’t need to describe the disappointment that followed the final whistle.
I arrived at the women’s hockey final at half time with the score 1-0 to Birmingham and only one nil thanks to a brilliant penalty flick save from the Durham goalkeeper. The second half was end to end entertainment but it was the Palatinates who got the equaliser thanks to a fantastic individual breakaway goal. As the tension mounted and Durham survived some scares it was the Palatinates who crashed in a second following a short corner routine. The last five minutes was not easy to watch but the final whistle brought monumental celebrations from the Durham crowd who celebrated in good voice with the players as the trophy was handed over. Durham 2 Birmingham 1. Huge congratulations to Durham!
It was then back to the football where Durham took on unbeaten Cardiff Met. This was without question the best game of women’s football I have ever watched. It was end to end, very physical but also very skilful and there were some amazing goals and some truly outstanding saves by both goalkeepers. Cardiff took the lead five minutes into the second half but Durham equalised ten minutes later with a great headed finish. Thirteen minutes from time Durham scored another fantastic goal which roofed into the net. Despite resolute defence and the occasional opportunity the Palatinates conceded five minutes from time and it was yet again into extra time.
Opportunities came and went as bodies, on both sides, were put on the line but it was Cardiff, who five minutes from time, crashed a ball against the bar that fell just over the line. The referee didn’t give the goal but the linesman made the right decision and there was no way back for the Palatinates. The final whistle resulted in huge celebrations from Cardiff as every Durham athlete fell where they stood. Cardiff 3 Durham 2. The after match team talk was about Sunday when the girls have a unique opportunity of competing in another national final in the futsal – I only hope their legs hold out!
Finally it was off to the women’s volleyball where Durham took on Northumbria. An interesting challenge as Northumbria are defending British Champions, Northern Premier League title holders and are undefeated and sit top of National One by eleven points making them the number one volleyball team in England. Durham have lost twice to them already this season but sit as one of the only teams to have taken a set off them this year.
This was women’s volleyball at its very best and there was no walk in the park for our opposition with the final set scores in favour of Northumbria being 25-15, 25-23 and 25-19. After the final whistle the Durham athletes sat quietly in the corner hopefully finding time to reflect on what has been a magnificent year.
Whilst all these finals were taking place our swimmers were back in action. Our 1st team finished 6th in Division Two, not a bad result given that Sheffield Hallam had three Olympic swimmers and Bath an Olympic finalist. The 2nds finished 4th in Division Three with both the 1st and 2nds earning promotion up a division for next year. Well done to them!
Monday 18th March 2013
The BUCS points table shows Durham holding on to 2nd place and it is now clear that the race for second this year will be close and it will be between Durham and Birmingham. The 16th to the 24th March will be a crucial nine days in deciding this outcome as Durham seek to stay ahead prior to heading for the hopeful comfort of our summer sports.
This weekend saw our men’s and women’s basketball and women’s volleyball fighting out both the last eight and the semi-finals. By 10.00 on Sunday morning we knew that Durham had secured three more Championship semi-finalists making it a total of sixteen Championship semi-finalists for the Palatinates, smashing our all-time record and securing more teams at this level that any other University in Britain this year. Outstanding and congratulations to all our athletes!
Our women’s basketball started the charge with a massive 101-27 win over Southampton Solent. Our men followed on, and having found the early stages a challenge cruised to a relatively easy win over Northumbria 91-60. Our volleyball had a different format of three league games with the top two teams in each league going into the semi-finals. Durham defeated St Andrews 25-11 and 25-6, Cambridge 25-12 and 25-10 and Bournemouth 25-15 and 25-9 to secure their semi-final spot.
In the basketball semi-final our women flew out of the blocks and took a solid early lead but gradually the power, movement and three point shooting of Loughborough took its toll and the Palatinates were unable to hold on losing out by 18 in what was a determined effort to defend our national title.
Last year we lost out to Worcester in the men’s basketball final and this year ended up facing them in the semi-final as the two BBL sides went head to head in this massive encounter. The scores were tied at half time and the Palatinates had a one shot lead at the end of the third quarter. With less than two minutes to go Durham had a shot to tie the scores but a miss and a break away three point score meant there was no way back for the Palatinates.
It was then down to volleyball who took on the dark horses King’s College London. They gave Northumbria a hard time in the quarters and put paid to Loughborough who we were expecting to play. This is an outstanding Palatinate side and they just managed to keep the lead in the first set running out 25-20 winners before putting on an exhibition of volleyball winning their way into the British University Final with a final set score of 25-7. They will now play the number one side in England who have yet to lose a match this year in fellow North East University Northumbria.
Away from our league sport huge congratulations to our men’s and women’s pool teams as they took on 60 Universities from across the country in the British Championship and Trophy finals. Perhaps surprisingly our women’s 2nds progressed further than our 1st team who were unfortunate to be knocked out. In the semi-final of the Championship our 2nd team did brilliantly to edge out Manchester in a one frame decider. In the final our 2nds were tied at 3-3 before, this time, losing the decider to Oxford but this was a great result for the Palatinates winning Championship silver medals.
Our men just missed out on the finals of the Championships and played in the Trophy. Durham defeated Southampton in the quarter final before disposing of St Andrews in the semi-final with some ease. The final was a much closer affair but the Palatinates came through with a thrilling 6-4 win over Lancaster to lift the Trophy and together with the women gain Durham 60+ much needed BUCS points.
And so to Hockey as the weekend league season really does start to move towards a close. This has been an excellent year for all eight teams in highly competitive leagues.
I am sure all teams will forgive me in starting with our women’s 3rds in a weekend of brilliant club results. Our women’s 3rds defeated Stockton 3-1 to secure the NE Division 2 title to add to their BUCS Division 2 title and their Conference cup win in a season of results that reads played 33 won 30 and drawn 3. Brilliant – well done to all!!
Elsewhere for the women our 1sts warmed up for the BUCS final with a 3-0 win against Liverpool. Our 2nds lost out 1-0 to top of the table Bowdon but bounced back to beat third placed Kendal 3-2 away to leave second place in their league entirely in their own hands. The 4ths took Marton Furness apart winning 12-0.
On the men’s side of the club there was an excellent 3-1 win for the 1st team against Belper to leave them well clear in third whilst the 2nds secured an excellent draw against Timperley.
Friday 15th March 2013
It was Conference Cup final day this Wednesday, a Plate semi-final for rugby league alongside some crucial league fixtures as we begin to wrap up the winter season. There was also an outstanding performance from our karting team!
Conference Cup Finals:
Our women’s 3rd team, who have still to lose a game of hockey this year, took on Liverpool John’s Moores 1st team and kept their unbeaten run securely in place as they came away with a fantastic cup final win to round off their season in the best possible way. Congratulations to them!!! Durham 3rds 4 LJM’s 1st 0.
Our men’s fencing have had an excellent year and our second team held it together against Sheffield 1st team to secure an excellent win, Durham 2nds 133 Sheffield 1st team 117. Congratulations to them.
Our women’s 3rds lacrosse took on the York 1st team and lifted the pace after half time to take the game from 4-4 to a convincing final win, Durham 3rds 10 York 1sts 6. Congratulations to them
Our women’s 2nds squash, who have also had an excellent year, were unable to hold the Sheffield 1st team and lost out 4-0.
Our women’s 4ths netball were unable to hold onto their third quarter lead against Manchester 5ths and went down 32-27 in a very close encounter.
Rugby League finally lost out in the semi-final of the Plate after an excellent cup run losing to Chester 18-28.
It was a big day for our rugby teams as they finished off their leagues. Pride of place goes to our 4th team as they destroyed the Sunderland 1st team winning 76-7 to be certain of winning their League. Our 3rd team will have been delighted to defeat top of the table Newcastle 2nds away from home 22-10.
A special mention must go to our men’s 2nd team rugby as they defeated Manchester 1st team 28-5. This has been a brilliant year for them and they will go down on record as being one of the very few rugby second teams to win a Premier B title.
Our men’s lacrosse 2nds won 15-4 against the Hull 1st team and our women’s hockey 4th team drew 3-3 with Northumbria 2nds. There was a rare defeat for our men’s 2nds football losing out 5-1 to York 1st team.
Finally, congratulations to our karting team. 54 universities and over two hundred drivers took to the track at Buckmore Park in a sport that Durham has not always excelled in. A solid morning saw Durham holding 9th place but this was completely turned round in the afternoon as Durham finished 1st and 4th in the two afternoon endurance rounds giving the Palatinates their first ever round win in ten years of karting. Durham now sits an amazing 3rd in the championship with two rounds still to complete.
Wednesday 13th March 2013
This was another huge weekend for Durham sport as our University and College women’s rowers travelled to the Head of the River in London. Three more teams were challenging for the Championship Finals whilst our snowsport and biathlon teams took centre stage. There was also a win for our basketball team in the BBL, our hockey league programme moved nearer to completion and more BUCS League games got played.
Head of the River:
303 crews completed the course in London and our women’s 1st VIII, despite a number of long term injuries, finished a very creditable 15th, the third university crew home behind Newcastle and Reading. Our 2nd VIII finished 58th the ninth university crew to finish and our Fresher’s VIII finished 135th.
There was an excellent finish for Hatfield College who came in 83rd in front of many top crews from other universities. Other College finishing positions were Grey College 159th, St Hild and St Bede 185th, Van Mildert 188th, Hatfield B 198th, St John’s 220th, St Aidan’s 225th, Butler 249th, Collingwood 251st and St Cuthbert’s 274th.
With six teams already through to the British University Championship finals this was another opportunity for three more teams to stake their claim!
Our women’s Futsal team (indoor soccer), defending British Champions, took on Birmingham who finished above them in the Premiership and above Loughborough in their futsal league whom Durham narrowly beat in the quarter final – everything pointed to a very close game. Nothing could be further from the truth as Durham played their second five for long periods of the game showing amazing depth in their squad and they simply took their opposition apart in a highly physical and fast flowing match – Durham 13 Birmingham 2. We are off to the national final again!
Our water polo team will have been delighted to get through to the last eight of the Championship but somewhat dismayed to be drawn in the same group as the super powers of swimming. Bath have a fifty metre pool and a twenty five metre pool and Loughborough just a fifty metre pool. Durham does not have a swimming pool, a fairly crucial requirement for this sport! We did go on to lose in a very close encounter to Bath 7-5 but an 8-7 win over Oxford and an amazing 13-7 win over Loughborough saw the Palatinates top their pool and propel themselves into the last four in one of the most amazing sporting achievements by any sport at Durham for some years.
Our women’s cricket took on Exeter in the indoor semi-final and just missed out on a final place in a very close encounter. Durham bowled Exeter out for 105 but fell short in the run chase finishing on 92 for 2.
Championship team and individual event:
Congratulations to our snowboard team who finished third in the British University Indoor Championship. Huge congratulations to Charlie Bullock who won gold, his third successive gold in snowsports.
Congratulations to our Biathlon team where our women finished an excellent 3rd in the team event and our men 5th scoring much needed BUCS points for the Palatinates.
British Basketball League
Durham travelled to Mersey Tigers and won 87-76 holding on to victory after leading by twenty at half time and the Durham side now sit joint eighth and still have Mersey Tigers due to travel to the Wildcats in their return fixture.
Hockey Weekend League Programme
This was another big weekend for hockey as league programmes moved closer to their conclusion and many of our sides had double headers.
On the Saturday our men bounced back from the disappointment of losing the BUCS semi-finals by taking Wakefield apart 5-1 in a very physical encounter. There was an excellent 3-2 win for the 2nds against Sheffield Bankers, the 3rds beat Hild/Bede 6-1 and the 4ths completed the winning streak with a 1-0 win at North Shields.
The women’s 1st team, still carrying injuries to key players, will have been very disappointed to lose 1-0 to Wakefield despite having seven short corners and much of the play. Their opposition had four Durham stars from the past and it was great to welcome them back to Durham.
The 2nds continued on their winning run with a competent 2-0 win over Wigton whilst the 3rds dropped a point at Broom drawing 2-2 but remain on target to win this very competitive league! The women’s 4ths won 2-1 at Gateshead to keep their hopes of winning their league alive.
Sunday saw the women’s 1st team bounce back to winning ways with a 4-0 away win at Whitley Bay. The 3rds beat Newcastle Ladies 1-0 in the game of the day and walked away with the North East Division Two title – huge congratulations to them!
The men’s 1st team drew a hugely exciting game with Bowden 4-4 but the men’s 2nds found the going too tough against Deeside losing out, in a rare defeat, 5-0.
Other League Fixtures
Our men’s 2nds lacrosse lost out to York 1st team for the second time in four days losing 9-4 and will have to settle for second place in their league this year. Our Women’s 2nds soccer will have been pleased to escape from Hull with a 1-1 draw given the very difficult playing conditions.
Thursday 7th March 2013
Firstly, my thanks to all the many students, staff, parents and alumni who arrived at our Championship semi-finals to support the Palatinates on Wednesday. Secondly, there was never going to be an easy game in any of our cup matches and it was highly likely that they would all go down to the wire. Lastly, there were some huge games for our league teams with promotion, league titles and relegation battles almost everywhere one cared to look.
I will leave it to the reader to decide whether this was a good day for Durham University! My apologies for the amount of information but this was a very big day for the Palatinates.
Durham took on a much fancied, fast moving, strong tackling Exeter in front of our biggest crowd of the year in the rugby. The Palatinates have a vastly experienced pack and a young but highly competent back line who both came out meaning business. An early 14-3 lead was gradually extended by the Palatinates but two yellow cards in quick succession almost changed the game as Exeter hit back to take the score to 31-20 to Durham. A likely Exeter try was brought back for a forward pass and from there on in Durham gave the ball to the pack and saw out the last fifteen minutes with Exeter rarely seeing the ball and Durham scoring again to win 36-20 – we are off to Twickenham again! A brilliant display! (Sunday, March 24th)
Durham women’s soccer, who three years ago sat in North Division 3, took on the mighty Loughborough, Northern Premier League Champions, in what turned out to be a magnificent game of end to end football. Despite Durham having the better of the chances the game went to extra time and with six minutes to go Durham finally broke the deadlock with a chip over the advancing keeper to cue huge celebrations! Durham 1 Loughborough 0 – we are off to the National final!
Durham faced Loughborough again but this time away from home in the women’s hockey. The announcement before the start of injuries to two of our key players was not the news we needed to hear but the Palatinates haven’t lost to Loughborough this year and clearly decided not to do so in this game in what turned out to be an absolute nail bighter. Loughborough 0 Durham 1 – we are off to the National final!
Our men’s tennis took on Southern Premier League Champions Bath and this was never going to be easy. The top doubles was desperately tight but the Palatinates held on to win and secured the second doubles with something to spare. Desperately close singles followed but Durham secured wins at one and four. Durham 8 Bath 4 – we are off to the National final!
Men’s lacrosse took on Bristol and pressurised their opposition from the start and after twenty minutes led 5-0. The Palatinates played fast and aggressive lacrosse in the early stages but it was then a case of seeing the game out as the Palatinates starved the opposition of scoring chances. Durham 12 Bristol 3 – we are off to the National final!
Our women’s lacrosse team was never going to find it as easy as they travelled to much fancied Oxford who beat Cambridge easily in their recent Varsity match. Having said that this is a side that has a steely determination about them as well as a great deal of experience and at the end of the day they were far too good for Oxford. Oxford 5 Durham11 – we are off to the National final!
Men’s hockey had yet to beat Sheffield Hallam this year and as such this was always a tough assignment away from home. As expected the game went down to the last play as the Palatinates laid siege to the Sheffield goal looking for an equaliser. Sheffield broke away with our goalkeeper in the wrong half of the field and secured a third goal resulting in a final score of Sheffield Hallam 3 Durham 1.
Our women’s tennis should be extremely proud of their game away at Exeter. With two of our four leading players injured our strength in depth was never more obvious as Durham pushed Exeter all the way securing a 6-6 draw but the Palatinates were eventually to lose out in the winner take all sudden death play-off games.
Men’s fencing lost three of their starting line up before they even travelled to Cambridge and will not have been too disappointed to lose 135-105. Even with our full side this was always going to be a big ask and the result should not take away from one of our best seasons for some time.
Our rugby 2nds against Loughborough 2nds was always going to be a difficult match away even though we have beaten them on the two occasions we have played them this year in Premier B. A final score of Loughborough 33 Durham 16 means there will be no final in London this year for the 2nds.
Plate quarter final
Our rugby league team has found this year difficult but they excelled themselves in the quarter final of the Plate securing an excellent 36-14 win over Hull.
Pride of place goes to men’s soccer who secured a vital 2-1 win against Newcastle away to secure promotion to the Premiership for the first time in their history – a great year for them, their third promotion in three years and much deserved for this highly committed and able group of players. Our 2nds will have been disappointed to lose out to Leeds Met 3rds 2-1 and so miss out on promotion. Our women’s 2nds secured an excellent 2-0 win against Northumbria 2nds.
Badminton men’s 1st team secured an 8-0 win over Leeds 2nds to ensure they stay in their league for next year in what was a straight relegation battle. The men’s 2nds also won 8-0 against York 2nds. Our women’s 2nds badminton lost out, perhaps not surprisingly, to Newcastle 1st team 7-1.
Men’s squash needed to win to gain promotion back to North One and duly obliged with a 5-0 away win at Sheffield. Our men’s 2nds defeated Northumbria 2nds 3-0 to secure promotion to Division Two North and our thirds won 3-0 against Sheffield 3rds to finish 2nd behind our second team. Our 4ths lost out 2-1 to just miss out on promotion finishing an excellent second.
Women’s 2nds lacrosse needed to win their last game to sit clear at the top of North Division One and will have been disappointed that Sheffield 1st team decided not to travel hence gifting us top spot. The women’s 3rds had an excellent 13-5 win over Northumbria 1st team to move top of their league. The men’s 2nds will have been disappointed to lose out in a straight battle for the title and promotion losing to York 1st team 16-8.
Men’s tennis recorded a series of good results as the 2nds beat Leeds Met 3rds 10-2 to secure an excellent second place in their league, the 3rds beat Sheffield Hallam 2nds 12-0. The men’s 4ths secured an 8-4 win against Hull 2nds. The women’s 3rds secured an excellent 10-2 win over Northumbria 1st team – great result.
Our golf 2nd team made light work of Newcastle 3rds winning 6-0 to move into the points in their league.
Our women’s basketball secured a 61-23 win over York St Johns to underline their supremacy in their league. Our men’s 2nds lost out to Sunderland 78-61 but may well have just done enough to secure their place in the league for next year.
Our netball 2nds lost out 37-18 to Sheffield 1st team. There was an excellent 27-22 win for our 3rds which may yet be good enough for them to steal the league and promotion at the very last hurdle, moving from third to first with the final result.
Our men’s hockey 2nds lost out to Manchester 1st team away but this has been an excellent league season for them. The 3rds earned a 2-2 draw against Leeds 2nds to secure second place in their league and the 4ths had an excellent 2-2 draw with York 1st team.
The women’s 2nds secured a 3-1 win away against Sheffield 1sts to secure an excellent second place in North One. The women’s 3rds won yet again defeating Leeds Met 2nds 3-1 but the 4ths lost out to Newcastle 2nds 4-0.
Our women’s 2nd team volleyball, who have grown in stature throughout the year, won 3-0 against Bradford 1st team.
Our rugby 3rds faced one of their very rare defeats losing to a Leeds team. Men’s table tennis lost out 11-6 to Newcastle 1st team.
Tuesday 5th March 2013
This is going to be without doubt one of the biggest Wednesday’s in our history and certainly one of the toughest.
Whilst a number of our Championship and Trophy sides will play on another day in their semi-finals and quarter finals, tomorrow, we have nine Championship semi-finals, four at home and five away and we have one Trophy semi-final away. Our opposition includes Cambridge, Oxford, Exeter, Loughborough, Bristol, Bath and Sheffield Hallam. Should be easy then??
We also have a plate fixture for Rugby League and thirty four league games, twenty four of which are away with a number of these being crucial promotion or relegation battles.
The very best of luck to all our teams from Team Durham!
Hockey decided to warm up for their Wednesday games with a magnificent set of results at the weekend. Congratulations to all our athletes throughout our eight teams.
Our women took on Brooklands at home and despite forgetting how to score secured a vital 1-0 win. Our women’s 2nds continued with their excellent season winning 7-1 against Bolton. The women’s 3rds defeated Whitley Bay 3-0! The 4ths made very light work of Darlington winning 8-1.
The men secured another excellent result drawing 3-3 with Preston but might have been disappointed not to hold on to their lead. The 2nds had a very good win against Formby 3-2. The men’s 4ths, like the women, made light work of Stockton 2nds winning 11-0.
A special mention should be given to our men’s 3rd team who played three times in three days. They drew 1-1 with Norton, defeated Durham City 8-2 and then beat Northumbria 1st team in their BUCS league 4-2.
Congratulations to Sara Emanuelsson who won the indoor archery Ladies Barebow individual BUCS Championship. She scored 555 smashing the previous tournament record of 509 – a remarkable win!
Our basketball found it tough going in the BBL losing out by 30 to Glasgow Rocks although they remained very much in the game to half time.
Thursday 28th February 2013
This was another huge day for the Palatinates and the score lines show that what turned out to be a very good day could so easily have gone the wrong way on occasions! There were vital games in the Championship, the Trophy and the on-going league programme and it was not a day for the feint hearted! The Palatinates stay on course to get an unprecedented 15 teams into the last four of British University Sport.
Championship and Trophy Games:
The big fixture of the day saw our rugby 1st team take on Bath in the BUCS quarter final. With fifteen minutes to go a penalty kick drew Durham level and this was followed by a try in the corner for the Palatinates and then a penalty. A very powerful Bath would not lie down and they bounced back with a try and conversion of their own to take the score to Durham 27 Bath 26 with three minutes to go. Sometimes in sport you wonder whether the clock has stopped but Durham saw the game out and will play Exeter at home next Wednesday in the semi-final.
We were given no respite by our women’s rugby players who found the going equally tough against a very well drilled Glamorgan. Durham tackled for all they were worth in the final fifteen minutes to hang on to a brilliant13-12 victory to move into the semi-finals of the British University Championships for the first time in their history where they will play Cardiff Met away.
If the rugby was close the same cannot be said of our women’s basketball in their Championship game. On their day they can be devastating and one has to feel sympathy for Brighton who had a very long journey to be beaten by an extraordinary score of 129-6. A good day at the office for our basketball!
Women’s tennis 2nds, who have had a marvellous year so far, took on Stirling 1st team and Durham proved to be far too good as they came away with an excellent 12-0 win to move into the Trophy final. Very well done to them!
Women’s badminton found the going too tough at Bath losing 8-0 in the Championship quarter finals but will have been delighted to have got to the last eight and should look back on an excellent year.
Women’s table tennis 2nds also lost out to Bath 1st team in the semi-final of the Trophy 5-0 and our golfers, also in the Trophy, battled bravely against one of the strongest institutions in British University golf losing out 7.5-.5 to UCLAN 2nds.
In the league programme it was an excellent day for many of our teams and none more so than women’s hockey. Our 2nds play in Division One where all teams bar Durham are 1st teams and we traditionally find survival in this league tough but not so this year. Yesterday the Palatinates beat league leaders Leeds 1st 1-0 to make certain of their second place – a great performance. Our women’s hockey 3rds stayed well clear in their league with an excellent 2-0 win over Leeds 2nds and to make it an excellent day for our women the 4ths defeated Newcastle 3rds 1-0.
Our men’s 2nds face exactly the same problem as the women in Division One but a crushing 4-0 win yesterday against Sheffield 1st team also takes them, at least for the time being, to second in their league. The 3rds lost out to top of the table Leeds Met 1st team 2-0 but will have been pleased with their performance on the day and stay second whilst the 4ths went down 4-3 to Northumbria 1st team in a very close contest.
Rugby decided to specialise in close games with their men’s 2nds suffering their first defeat of the season losing 18-17 to Sheffield Hallam 1st team in a very close encounter. They have already won Premier B but will have been bitterly disappointed to lose their unbeaten record. There were no such problems for the 3rds who won 51-12 against Newcastle 3rds and for our 4ths who won 72-7 against Leeds 5ths. Our women’s rugby 2nds found it hard going against Hull 1st team losing 55-0.
In tennis our men’s 3rds had an excellent 8-4 win against York 1sts but our 4ths, perhaps not surprisingly, lost out to Newcastle 1st team 10-2. Our women’s 3rds had a very good win defeating Newcastle 2nds 10-2 whilst our 4ths defeated York St John’s 1st team 12-0 to stay well clear at the top of their league.
Women’s soccer 2nds earned an excellent 4-1 win against Sheffield 2nds and our men’s 2nds had an equally convincing 5-1 win against Huddersfield 1sts.
Our men’s 2nds basketball continued on their comeback trail as they beat Leeds 1st team 92-65 and will now need a similar win away at Sunderland if they are to survive in this league. Our women’s volleyball 2nds defeated York St Johns 1st team 3-0.
Our squash teams had yet another clean sweep and most importantly our men’s 1st team defeated joint top of the table York 1st team 3-2 and now need a win next week to secure their league. The 2nds had an excellent 2-1 win against Leeds 2nds, the 3rds defeated Northumbria 2nds 3-0 and the two Durham teams sit first and second in their league as Durham look to secure a series of promotions in this sport. The 4ths won 3-0 against Northumbria 3rds. The women’s 2nds secured an excellent win against Leeds Met 3rds to stay second in their league.
The women’s 2nds netball found it tough going as they lost out to top of the table Newcastle 2nds 63-21 but there were excellent wins for the 3rds against Bradford 1sts 38-34 and for the 4ths against Leeds Trinity 2nds 44-17.
Women’s 3rds lacrosse made light work of Sheffield Hallam 1st team winning 13-1 and the men’s 2nds won equally convincingly winning 13-5 against Hull 1sts. The men’s 3rds went down to York 1st team 16-0.
Men’s badminton secured a much needed 4-4 draw against Hull and must now win their final home game to ensure their safety. The men’s 2nds won well away against Leeds 3rds 6-2 whilst the women’s 2nds secured a 4-4 draw against Northumbria 2nds.
Men’s 2nds table tennis lost out to Northumbria 1st team 17-0 and our golf 2nds lost out 4-5-1.5 to Northumbria 2nds.
Congratulations to Jennifer Walsh who finished second in the Junior National Cross Country event in her last year in this age category – a fantastic achievement to be number two in the country for your age group. Daniel Jenkin finished an impressive 36th.
In the BUCS indoor athletics Owen Walpole (Josephine Butler) finished 7th in the 1500m final, Alex Caine (St Cuthbert’s) was 11th in the shot, Eleanor Gregory (St Cuthbert’s) was 7th in the high jump and Bryony Bendle (Grey) was 7th fastest in the 800 metres. We sent our largest squad for some time to the indoors and they will have been delighted with their overall performance.
Fifty one teams and four hundred competitors entered this year’s British University Bouldering Championships and Durham will have been pleased to finish 14th and will have been equally pleased to get all their athletes in the top 100.
Monday 25th February 2013
The latest BUCS table still has Durham holding on to second place as every game and every major event now takes on real significance. Loughborough 2852, Durham 2176, Birmingham 1967, Bath 1891, Exeter, 1873 and Nottingham 1781.
This weekend contributed hugely to our cause as Durham won points across a whole range of sports. There was a final four place for women’s futsal, a last eight place for our women’s indoor cricket, medals in tennis and individual medals in boxing, orienteering and fencing. Women’s lacrosse 2nds put in an impressive display and basketball had the closest of weekends.
Pride of place goes to our tennis squad who made a little bit of history for Durham. Eleven individuals made it through to the individual championships and our doubles teams were as always heavily represented. The history comes with the fact that Durham made three of the four finals, the men’s individuals and the women’s and men’s doubles.
In fiercely contested matches with the men’s doubles going to a final set tie break Durham had to settle for three silver medals. Harel Srugo ended up simply having to play too many games as he lost out in the men’s final to the Stirling number one and then lost 11-9 in the tie break of the men’s doubles final alongside Jonny Binding. Our women’s doubles of Jen Migan and Selma Babic went down to the Bath pair in the final. An outstanding weekend for Durham tennis as the Palatinates held on to their number one ranking in British University tennis.
In boxing Jack Haslett, our only entry, returned a brilliant Gold in the men’s 2-10 under 75kg category – an amazing result for him!
Orienteering had a brilliant day! Lucy Butt and Peter Bray both brought back silver medals in the BUCS orienteering national championships. Just to put this into context Lucy finished 26 seconds behind the world champion. The team performed extremely well both as individuals and in the relay securing team 3rd for Durham behind Edinburgh and Sheffield – our best set of results for some years.
Emily Todd has had an outstanding final year at Durham leading women’s fencing and will have been thrilled to take a bronze medal in the women’s sabre.
Our women’s soccer (futsal) sit as defending British Champions but would not have chosen to have to take on Loughborough in the quarter finals. Durham went 1-0 down early on but turned round at half time 1-1. The second half saw the Palatinates start to turn up the pressure and three well taken goals put us out of sight despite a late goal from Loughborough meaning an eighth side from Durham has made it to the last four in Britain. Durham will be at home in the semi-final of futsal and will meet up again with Loughborough again in the semi-final of the eleven-a-side version of the game again at Durham!
Our women’s cricket was back in action this weekend in the indoors and proved far too strong for the sides from the North and Scotland. St Andrew’s 56 for 6 Durham 57 for 3, Edinburgh 56 for 4 Durham 59 for 1, Newcastle 31 for 6 Durham 35 for 0, Durham 138 for 4 St Andrew’s 36 for 5 and Edinburgh 85 for 6 Durham 86 for 1. Durham went into the weekend with a 100% record and five more victories take them straight to the national quarter finals.
Men’s basketball travelled once again to Plymouth on Friday and performed outstandingly in front of a full house. Durham got free to shoot in the last ten seconds with the score Plymouth 102 Durham 100 but the ball agonisingly stayed out and this will go down as one of our best performances we have ever produced in basketball. We returned to home territory on Sunday and once again lost out by the narrowest of margins this time losing by four to Worcester.
Lacrosse held a National Championship over the weekend outside of BUCS and Durham sent down their second team to take on the opposition. The Palatinates had an excellent two days winning all their games on the Saturday and making it to the semi-finals on the Sunday – very well done to them!
The weather did not help our hockey programme but the men’s 2nds recent unbeaten run came to an end losing 3-1 to York City. It is not often that we can say that Loughborough has done us a favour but a 7-3 win for them over Beeston means that if we win our game in hand we can draw level with them again.
Thursday 21st February 2013
We have had many outstanding Wednesdays over the years but I wonder whether we have ever had a day like this Wednesday? The Palatinates were simply sensational in the Championship quarter finals, the Trophy, the Conference Cup semi-finals, the Plate semi-final and where we played, in the Leagues. In fact we didn’t lose a league game! The end of the day scorecard reads Durham: played 38 won 28, Drawn 4 and lost 6.
In the Championship I will start with hockey and with our men who played their third game in four days, depleted by injuries, and away at Southern Premiership League Champions Bath. This was as tough as it gets and the game was still drawn at 0-0 after extra time but the Palatinates scored a golden goal to power through to the semi-finals. A truly outstanding win!
They will be joined by our women’s hockey who ensured their path to the semi-finals with a commanding 3-0 win against Manchester. This is a very accomplished side!
Our women’s soccer had the unenviable task of travelling to one of the superpowers of the women’s game Hertfordshire and came away with a fantastic 2-1 win to move to the semi-finals.
Women’s lacrosse took on Bristol with some serious unfinished business having gone out to the same opposition last year. Durham was never going to let that happen again as they attacked with pace and flair ending with a final score of Durham 18 Bristol 3 and so on to the semi-finals.
I was away from Durham for the early part of the afternoon and heard that our men’s lacrosse was in trouble only to get back to hear a final score of Durham 23 Portsmouth 0 – how wrong can you be? On to the semi-finals.
Our men’s tennis took on a strong Bournemouth team but will have been more than happy with the final score that takes them into the semi-final, Durham 10 Bournemouth 2. Our women’s tennis is remarkably strong but we would not have expected Bristol not to travel and in so doing give us a free path to the semi-final.
Finally, to fencing where our men took on Oxford and where the Palatinates trailed by eleven going into the last weapon but just about everything was going our way and a magnificent sabre gave the Palatinates the win, Durham 123 Oxford 119. On to the semi-finals.
Only our women’s fencers went out in the Championship and a special mention for them as they lost to a very strong Cambridge side away from home 116-104. A great effort!
Eight teams into the last four in the British Universities Championships with men’s and women’s rugby, men’s and women’s basketball, women’s volleyball, badminton and futsal still to play their quarter finals!
And so to the Trophy and men’s rugby 2nds, defending national champions. A final score of Manchester 1st 3 Durham 2nds 6 was enough to take us into the semi-finals in a desperately close game.
Golf had a really difficult draw against Stirling 2nds but came away with a remarkable 5-1 victory in one of our best displays of the year.
Women’s table tennis also moved to the semi-final due to King’s College London not travelling.
And so to the Conference Cup!
Women’s lacrosse 3rds took on Liverpool John Moores 1st team in the semi-final and moved seamlessly through to the final winning 8-4.
Women’s hockey 3rds took on Sheffield 2nds and swamped their opposition 4-0 to also move into the final!!
Our women’s squash 2nds took on Newcastle 2nds and drew 2-2 but moved into the finals on count back. It was all going our way!
Men’s fencing 2nds had the unenviable task of having to play our 3rds and won 135-86 to join the above in the finals.
Our men’s 3rds tennis failed to make it through losing to Sheffield 1st team and women’s 2nds basketball lost their first game of the year losing 77-45 to Leeds Met 2nds.
We had two defeats in table tennis as our women’s 3rds and 4ths both failed to make it to the final but they will be thrilled with their semi-final places.
Maybe the biggest celebration of the day came with our 4th team netball who won with the last play of the game against Leeds 5ths in the Plate to move to the final. Great result for them in an excellent game of netball.
And so to the league games!
Pride of place must go to our women’s 2nds lacrosse who took on a very strong Leeds 1st team with Durham needing to lose by less than four to win North Division One but two goals in the last two minutes secured Durham a 7-7 draw and a great league title. Our men’s 2nds were back in league action and won 30-0 away against Leeds 2nds.
There was a really important win for our men’s soccer who defeated Liverpool 3-1 meaning that a win on the last day of the season at Newcastle will gain them promotion to the Premiership for the first time in our history. Our men’s 2nds soccer drew 1-1 with Huddersfield 1st team whilst our women’s 2nds won 1-0 against Northumbria 2nds recording an excellent win.
Our women’s tennis 2nds played their final Premiership game and drew with Loughborough 2nds 6-6 to round off a wonderful first year in the Premiership. Our men’s 2nds tennis had an excellent win away against Manchester 2nds and a no show from Hull ensured our 4ths stay in their league for next year.
Our men’s and women’s hockey 2nds had an excellent day with the men beating Liverpool John Moores 1st team 4-0 and the women defeating Northumbria 1st 4-2. Our men’s 4ths secured an excellent 2-2 draw with Leeds 2nds.
Men’s table tennis won 11-6 against Manchester 1st team. Men’s squash won 5-0 to move joint top of their league and there was a 3-0 win for our men’s 4ths squash.
Men’s rugby 4ths stayed top of their league as they dispatched Sheffield Hallam 3rds 68-3. Our women’s 2nds also secured an excellent win over Newcastle 2nds winning 27-15.
Finally, congratulations to Mary Carson who has been selected to represent Northern Ireland in the European under 21 netball championships and to Steph Elliott who, after her performances for the full England hockey side, has been drafted in to the full GB squad.
Tuesday 19th February 2013
Another big weekend of sport for the Palatinates and a major weekend for our rowers as our novices, intermediate and championship crews took on the rest of the British Universities in fours and eights at the Head of the River race.
Latest News: men’s hockey travelled to Bristol in the last sixteen of the championship and went 2-0 up after ten minutes before securing a 3-1 win to make it to the last eight. We now play Bath away on Wednesday but losing two of our strikers to long term injuries at Bristol will not have helped our cause.
Durham now have fifteen teams in the last eight of the Championship with women’s basketball still to play their last sixteen game setting yet another all-time record for the Palatinates.
Saturday was the turn of our novices in rowing and they did not disappoint bringing home some excellent results.
Both our women’s 1st eight and our coxed four won gold. Our men’s 2nd eight won silver whilst our 1st eight, after boat trouble, finished 4th. The men’s fours were 4th, 5th and 20th. An excellent day for rowing!
Hockey came through the day without losing a game. The men’s 2nds drew 1-1 to continue their recent undefeated run in Premier North, the men’s 3rds drew 0-0 with Morpeth to stay favourites to win their league and the men’s 4th beat Wilton 2-1.
Our women secured a 2-1 win over Doncaster in the National League in what was not our best display of the year but a win is a win! The 2nds came out on top yet again winning 3-2 away from home at Whitley Bay and the 3rds secured a slightly surprising 1-1 draw with Durham City 1st team but remain favourites to win their league! Finally our 4ths defeated Durham City 2nds 4-0.
Our 3rds and 4ths rugby should have been in action on Saturday but the 4ths arrived to play second placed Leeds 5ths only to find the opposition did not turn up hence donating five crucial points to the Palatinates who stay well clear in their league. The 3rd team got back to winning ways with a 27-25 win against Sheffield 2nds away from home – tough game!
Our championship crews took to the water against a large field and the Palatinates figured on the leader board throughout the day. In truth injury meant both our men and women were very stretched but with BUCS points awarded for finishing in the top eight it was a good all round day for Durham!
Our men’s eight finished 2nd behind Imperial but in front of close neighbours Newcastle. There was also an excellent silver medal for our men’s coxed four. Our quad finished 4th, our coxless four fifth and there were sixth places for our lightweight quad and our lightweight coxless four.
Our women’s eight came in 4th but there were bronze medals for our quad, our coxless four, our lightweight coxless four, our lightweight quad and a fifth place for our coxed four.
In the Intermediate division Durham again showed their strength in depth. In the men’s our eight was 2nd and our coxed four 4th. Our women’s eight finished 4th and our coxed four came in 7th.
Overall our rowers brought in just under 100 BUCS points from this event and this will be crucial as our closest rivals Birmingham and Bath head for the long course swimming and the indoor athletics next weekend. Our rowers will have created a useful buffer in an attempt to keep us out in second place but it will be close.
Our men’s hockey recorded their best result of the year in National North hitting six passed Khalsa without reply. Our women’s 3rd team was in action again and recorded their second draw of the weekend, Alnwick 2 Durham 2 but will be happy to have retained their unbeaten record for this season. Great effort!!
Our basketball played at our home of basketball at Queen’s Campus in the BBL but our ability to hit the ring but not go through it in the first quarter left us too far adrift of Glasgow Rocks and we were never able to pull the early deficit back losing 99-73.
Our canoeists were one of twenty five universities who took on the slalom course at Teesside. This is not the Palatinates strongest disciple in canoeing and they will have been pleased with an overall seventh place. A huge thanks must go to our past students who come back year after year to help run this national event in an extremely professional manner. It is greatly appreciated by us all back at base.
Friday 15th February 2013
Not for the first time this year the weather played havoc with our fixture list this Wednesday but many crucial games did take place as Durham crashed through the 2000 point mark in the BUCS table. With nine teams already through to the last eight in the Country the question remained as to how many of our un-seeded sides could join them and whether our women’s rugby would make it through by right. There also remained one Premier League title to be decided and it went to the Palatinates.
Women’s rugby did make it through defeating a very competent Newcastle 25-0 securing a bonus point in the process. Individual tries from our number eight and full back, both secured from their own ten metre line, were the stand out moments as Durham finished one point ahead of Loughborough to secure second place!
Competing in the last sixteen three more teams made it to the last eight in Britain and with women’s basketball and men’s hockey still to play we could yet get to an all-time record for Durham of fifteen teams in the last eight in British University Sport.
The first through was our women’s soccer who took on bottom of the Southern Premiership Bath and crashed ten goals past their opposition without reply in a resounding win, Durham 10 Bath 0. They now face a very tough round away from home facing one of the super powers of the women’s game in Hertfordshire.
They were joined in the last eight by women’s badminton who also won in convincing style, Durham 7 Southampton 1. This is a side who find it tough going in a very difficult Northern Premiership but who for the third year in a row has made it to the last eight – a great effort – well done to them!
Women’s volleyball won the third placed play off beating Loughborough in the National Cup at the weekend and will have been delighted to have secured a 3-0 win against a very competent Edinburgh in the last sixteen of BUCS to make it thirteen through so far for the Palatinates.
Durham did lose three sides in the last sixteen and two of these games were incredibly close.
Men’s volleyball will have been very disappointed to go out in the last sixteen to Edinburgh losing 25-21 in the first set and then by two in both of the final two sets in what could not have been a closer encounter.
Women’s squash, who play outside of the Premiership, put on an excellent show down at Bristol losing narrowly to their Premiership opposition 3-1 with every match going to the wire. This has been an excellent season for our women’s squash.
Finally, women’s netball found it very tough at Exeter as they lost out against one of the Southern super powers in this sport.
There were other big games in the Trophy with our women’s tennis 2nds playing away against Birmingham 1st team. The Midland team was no match for this very powerful Durham unit with the final score Birmingham 1sts 0 Durham 2nds 12 as the Palatinates moved safely into the semi-final. The men’s 2nds tennis found the going too tough at the men’s power house of tennis losing 0-12 away at Stirling. Our women’s 2nds table tennis defeated Nottingham Trent 2nds 3-2 in the Trophy – well done to them.
In our league programme, in the world of rugby, our 2nd team secured our seventh Premier League title with a 43-7 win against Sheffield Hallam 1st team. This is a remarkable achievement with a playing record of played ten won ten and so huge congratulations go to them! The 3rds will have been very disappointed to lose out 13-10 to Northumbria 2nds in a rare defeat.
In a full house for men’s squash the 1st team won 5-0 against Leeds Met 2nds to stay top of their league. The men’s 2nds won 3-0, the 3rds defeated Huddersfield 1st team 3-0 and there was a 3-0 win for our 4ths against Leeds Met 4ths. A great day for them!
Men’s football recorded an excellent 3-2 win over Leeds to stay top of North One. Men’s table tennis 2nds secured an excellent 13-4 win over Newcastle 2nds.
Women’s basketball continue to take everything in their stride as they defeated Teesside 1st team 58-38 and there was an excellent win for our men’s 2nds against Sheffield 1sts as they won 79-52.
Elsewhere in tennis our 3rds earned a well-deserved 6-6 draw with Northumbria 1st team, our 4ths beat Newcastle 2nds 8-4 recording an outstanding result. The women’s 3rds lost out to Newcastle 1st team 8-4 whilst the 4ths had a great 10-2 win against Leeds 2nds.
Our women’s 2nds netball found the going tough away at Hull as they lost out 47-28 but there were excellent wins for the 3rds and 4ths. The 3rd team won 59-19 against York St Johns 2nds whilst the 4ths beat York St Johns 3rds 43-7.
Our badminton men lost out in a close encounter with York 5-3 but there was an emphatic win for our men’s 2nds 8-0 against York St John’s 1st team. Our women’s 2nds lost out to York 1sts 6-2.
There were no hockey games on Wednesday but two results not reported from the weekend on our men’s side of the club were Norton 1 Durham 4ths 4 and Morpeth 0 Durham 4ths 2. The 4ths did play a BUCS fixture on Thursday night and lost out to our 3rd team 5-3 in their BUCS league.
In closing a special mention of Steph Elliott who played in all the games for England in their matches in South Africa. She will have been particularly pleased to have played in the third placed play-off game where England beat Australia – great result! Good to have you back Steph!
Monday 10th February 2013
The Palatinates will have been very disappointed to lose one of the key games of the season but in another magnificent weekend we can look back on two brilliant individual performances, some big wins at the top level and our strength in depth across sports. Well done to all!
Huge congratulations to Angus Groom (Hatfield) who won the single sculls in the British University rowing small boats’ event and finished an outstanding second in the GB under 23 category. Very well done to him! Will Mace (John Snow) was a very creditable 4th in BUCS and 6th in the GB under 23’s and Amelia Carlton (St Cuths) finished 5th in the lightweight single sculls in BUCS. Our men’s pairs finished 4th and 6th in the GB under 23 category.
Three of our rugby teams took to the field this weekend with Durham scoring 206 points and conceding only 3.
Pride of place goes to our women who now have to win at home against Newcastle to secure a much coveted seeded second place in front of Loughborough. They travelled to Nottingham over the weekend with a final score of Nottingham 0 Durham 77. A special mention here for Anna Derrick (Josephine Butler) who kicked all eleven conversions and scored four tries amassing forty two personal points – that could just be a record for a women’s rugby player at Durham?
It is worth noting that a change in rules this year means that in finishing in the top two of a Premiership the team goes straight through to the quarter final of the Championship with no last sixteen game. If women’s rugby win on Wednesday they will be the ninth Durham team to be exempt from the last 16.
The men’s 3rd team rugby travelled to play York 2nds and scored 55 points without reply and remain second in their league. The 4th team took on York 3rd team and won 76 – 3 to stay out on top in their league.
A disappointing first goal and another goal conceded when pressing to recover led to our women’s 1st team losing to joint top of the table Beeston away from home 0-2 in England Hockey National North. There will be huge disappointment in the camp as this is only the second defeat for the girls this season but there remain many crucial games still to play. A big thanks to the many alumni and parents who supported us on Saturday!
This result certainly didn’t impact on the rest of the girls as they had yet another fantastic result in the 2nds with a 4-1 win against Longridge to stay second in the Northern Premiership. The 3rds won 7-1 on Saturday against Norton to stay top of North East Division 2 and they defeated Leeds Met 2nds on Sunday in BUCS 3-0 to go top of North 2.
The men’s 1st team bounced straight back from the Nottingham defeat to secure a 4-1 win against Doncaster to hold on to joint third in National North. The men’s 2nds did well to secure a 1-1 draw with Brooklands to keep their strong run intact and the men’s 3rds hit a remarkable 14 without conceding to stay second in their league but they have a crucial game in hand.
Watching Durham play basketball is nothing if not exciting. After defeat to the Eagles the crowd was less impressive this weekend as Durham took on the London Lions in the BBL. Durham saw a 14 point lead with five minutes to go, drop to 2 points before a magnificent final two minutes saw Durham run out 89-84 winners as they moved back into the pack in eighth place in the BBL. Great result!!
Finally, our 2nd and 3rd lacrosse teams took on Newcastle 2nds and 3rds this weekend and the results suggest we have ample depth in this sport, Durham 2nds 20 Newcastle 2nds 3 and Durham 3rds 25 Newcastle 3rds 2.
Friday 7th February 2013
Another Wednesday of crucial results and in the main it went extremely well for the Palatinates. Many of the Premierships played out their final games and Durham should be delighted with most of the outcomes.
It was also Conference Cup quarter final day with more BUCS points at stake for the winners. This mainly involves our 2nds, 3rds and 4ths in a knock out competition that started last October. The competition often gives these teams the chance to play opposition University 1st teams from around the North of England and I am delighted to say that ten Palatinate sides are through to the semi-finals. A record for us!
Latest Points Table: Loughborough 2641, Durham 1968, Bath 1758, Birmingham 1756, Exeter 1721, Nottingham 1521.
Our rugby 1st XV did indeed complete the year with a final league win evidencing a record of played twelve won twelve with an away win at Newcastle 12-41. Congratulations to Josh, Fred, Harrison and Jack who have completed three years in Premiership League rugby without losing a game – brilliant!
The 2nds played a very strong Loughborough 2nds and held their lead in Premier B with a try in the last minute of the game winning 16-14 – brilliant again! The 3rd team destroyed Sheffield Hallam 2nds 52-12 but the 4th team will have been disappointed to lose to Hull 1st team 13-10. Our women’s 2nds rugby lost out to York St John’s 1st team 15-0.
The result of the day undoubtedly came in women’s tennis where our 2nds faced a winner take all tie away against Loughborough 2nds in their fight to stay in the Premier League (the only sport to allow 2nd teams into a Premiership) and came away with a magnificent 10-2 away win to secure another year in the top league. Very well done to them! The women’s 3rds lost out 10-2 to Newcastle 1st team in the Conference Cup and the 4th team also exited to Northumbria 1st team.
Our men’s 2nds tennis won 12-0 against Sheffield Hallam to secure a very healthy position in Division 1A whilst the 3rds won in a tie break after drawing 6-6 with Sheffield 2nds to secure a semi-final place in the Conference Cup.
Women’s soccer saw out their first year in the Premiership winning 4-0 against Leeds Met and have done brilliantly to finish tied second but have missed out on a seeded place on head to heads with Birmingham. Great effort from them! The 2nds lost out to Sunderland 1st team 4-1.
Men’s soccer lost a top of the table fixture away at Chester 2-1 and will now have to hope Chester slip up elsewhere whilst the 2nds earned a 1-1 draw.
Women’s lacrosse finished six points clear of second placed Birmingham in the Premiership with a comprehensive 18-1 win away at Manchester. The women’s 3rds destroyed Keele’s 1st team 29-0 in the Conference Cup.
In the men’s Conference Cup the two strongest sides faced each other in the quarter final and the men’s 2nds will have been very disappointed to lose 11-10 to York 1st team away. The 3rds recorded an excellent 4-2 league win against Leeds 2nds.
A special mention for our rugby league side that had an excellent 28-22 win over Teesside – very well done to them!
Men’s fencing had an excellent day in the Conference cup with the 2nds defeating Hull 1sts 135-117 and the 3rds defeating Leeds 1sts 135-116. Their reward a semi-final place playing against each other. I guess the good news is that we are guaranteed a finalist!
Women’s basketball will have been delighted to have progressed to the semi-finals of the Conference Cup with a 47-34 win over Northumbria 2nds.
There was an excellent win for our netball 4th team as they defeated Cumbria 1st team 50-14 in the Conference Plate.
Women’s hockey have had a lot easier games this year but managed to come through with a 3-2 home win against Nottingham leaving them well clear as Northern Premier League Champions and unbeaten in their league this year – brilliant. The 2nds had an excellent 3-1 win against Liverpool 1sts to place them second in this all 1st team league. The 3rds secured a 3-1 win in the Conference Cup against Leeds 4ths – well done to them.
The men’s 1st team will have been bitterly disappointed to lose 3-1 in their final Premier League game and finish fourth. The 2nds gained an excellent 4-1 win away at MMU but the 3rds lost out in the Conference Cup to Northumbria 4-1. The 4ths earned a solid 3-1 win in the League against York 1st team.
Our badminton teams found it tough in the Conference Cup with the women’s 2nds going out 5-3 to York 1sts in a very close encounter and the men’s 2nds also losing 7-1.
Congratulations to women’s 2nds squash who won through to the semi-finals with a 4-0 win over York 1st team. The news was not good for the 2nds and 3rds men’s teams as they went down 3-2 to York 1sts and 3-0 to Leeds Met 2nds. In the league programme the men’s 1st won 3-2 to go joint top of their league with a game in hand.
Table tennis had a mixed day as the men’s 1sts lost heavily to Sheffield and the women’s 5ths lost 5-0 to Newcastle 2nds but the women’s 3rds and 4ths progressed to the semi-finals with the 4ths beating Sheffield 2nds 3-2.
Men’s 2nds golf lost out to Newcastle 1st team in the Conference Cup 4-2. There was also a 14-8 defeat for our American Football team in the North East league against Sunderland.
At the weekend our men’s and women’s cross country teams were in action and although neither was at full strength they will have been extremely pleased with their finishing positions. The men came 11th out of 53 Universities and the women 12th out of 51 Universities. A special mention for Dan Jenkin who came in 9th, an excellent result in a race packed with internationals.
Tuesday 4th February 2013
A magnificent weekend of sport brought a potentially unique record one step closer, two more Premier League Titles were secured, hockey had a storming three days setting them on the right road for 2013, there were wins for American Football, men’s and women’s soccer but basketball found it tough.
Nottingham 5 Durham University 59, apart from being a dominating score line, might not mean a great deal given that the 1st XV have already taken the Northern Premier League title but for some this was a crucial game. For a small group of players they will travel to Newcastle on Wednesday now knowing that a win will place them as a unique group of students in that in three years at University they will have won every game they played in the Rugby Northern Premier League of British University Sport. We wish them well!
The 3rds will have been hugely disappointed to lose out to Newcastle 2nds 18-11 and will need to go to Newcastle and reverse this result to have a chance of winning the league.
It was a great three days for hockey with the women securing their Premiership title in one of the toughest Premier Leagues in BUCS and both the men and women secured a number of excellent results.
Pride of place goes to the women who recorded two of their most important results of the year in 48 hours. On Sunday they recorded a crucial win in National North with a score line of Durham 2 Loughborough 0 keeping the girl’s level on points with Beeston at the top of the table. On Monday evening they dispatched Leeds Met 3-1 to secure the hugely valued BUCS Northern Premiership leaving the super powers of Birmingham and Loughborough some way adrift. The women’s 2nds continued on their merry way with a 3-1 win against Springfields in what is turning out to be a wonderful season for them.
Men’s hockey kept pace with the women as the 1st team got back to winning ways. On Sunday they had an excellent 5-3 win against Olten in National North and on Monday they dispatched Leeds 4-0 in the BUCS Premiership. There was an equally impressive 4-3 win away for the 2nds against Alderley Edge as they continue to move up the table.
Our sixth team to win a Premier League was our men’s lacrosse side but they did this in the most bizarre of circumstances. They were given a walk over by Sheffield Hallam on Saturday, one of the power players in this sport, which not only gave the Palatinates a well-deserved title but may well condemn their opposition to automatic relegation. The 1st team did however get to play on Sunday and dispatched Manchester 25-2 to underline their dominance of this league. Three premiership titles in three years – well done to them!
Our 3rd team lost out 5-2 to a very strong Hull side. Please note my last report recorded a win in lacrosse for the men’s 2nds over the 3rds. This was an error and the game will be played later in the year. My apologies.
Women’s soccer find themselves back in their weekend league programme after their exit from the FA Cup and crashed 10 passed Easingwold. The men played a number of crucial games in their futsal league beating Northumbria 2nds 8-4 and Newcastle 1st 13-3 but lost out to Northumbria 1sts 5-3. They end the year in second place in their league.
Our American Football team won 6-0 against Bradford and are safely placed in the top half of their league in what is looking like a strong year for them.
After brilliant back to back wins in the BBL our basketball team lost out to Sheffield Sharks on Friday and then came up against the mighty Newcastle Eagles at home on Sunday. Charles Smith hit 49 of the Eagles 106 points as the champions proved too strong for Durham in front of a virtually full house at Newton Aycliffe. The atmosphere was excellent as the home crowd stayed behind Durham throughout with the final score Durham 65 Newcastle 106.
Finally, our golf team lost out 4.5-1.5 to the top of the table but are hopefully placed relatively safely in mid-table.
Thursday 31st January 2013
Once again the Palatinates had some absolutely crucial wins as nearly every result now has a bearing on our defence of second place in BUCS and our league status for next year. There were inevitably a few disappointments but overall we are very happy. Three Northern Premier League Titles have now become four as men’s rugby, men’s basketball and women’s tennis were joined by women’s lacrosse. Women’s hockey and men’s lacrosse moved a step closer to potential Premier League Titles and men’s fencing secured a seeded play off place.
Women’s lacrosse secured their title, with a game to play, in a highly competitive match, with the final score Durham 9 Loughborough 6. It is always nice to win a title when playing against the old enemy! The 2nds proved far too strong for Manchester 2nds winning 21-1 to stay top of Division 1 whilst the 3rds were gifted a win against Hull 1st team.
Men’s lacrosse remains unbeaten and could secure the title very soon as they face two home games in the next seven days. Their long lay-off did not appear to knock them out of their stride as they beat Nottingham 17-2. Our 2nd team defeated our 3rd team 19-0 to remain in contention for their league title.
Had our men’s rugby lost their last three games it was mathematically possible for the second placed team to draw level with them. This was never likely as the Palatinates, missing five through illness and injury, made light work of a Leeds team that came full of intent winning 41-10. The 2nd team took on Aberdeen in the Trophy and will have been more than happy with their 37-13 win to move safely into the quarter finals. Our women travelled to Edinburgh and came back with a highly convincing 37-7 win to stay second in the Premiership and remain one of the form teams in the Country at the moment. They need the results elsewhere to go for them if they are to hold on to second but it is looking a possibility.
Congratulations to our men’s 1st team fencing who secured a top two playoff place with an excellent result, Loughborough 105 Durham 112 – great result! The men’s 2nds defeated Leeds 1sts 135-62, the 3rds defeated Newcastle 3rds 135-108 but the women’s 2nds lost out to a strong Newcastle 2nds 120-102.
Our women’s fencing feared that they would face a very difficult year in 2012/13 but came up trumps at the weekend securing a final position of third in the Premiership, just outside the seeded positions for the championships. They had two excellent wins and a draw – Durham 135 Birmingham 88, Durham 137 Edinburgh 98 and Durham 108 York 108. Very well done to them!
Women’s hockey will be delighted to have travelled to a strong Manchester side and to have secured a 3-0 win. A win at home next week against bottom of the table Leeds Met will offer up yet another Premier League Title for the Palatinates. The men’s 1st team will, in contrast, be very disappointed to have gone down 4-3 at Sheffield Hallam conceding two very late goals. The women’s 2nds drew 1-1 with Newcastle 1st team to stay well placed in their league, the 3rds won 8-1 against York St Johns 1st team whilst the 4ths were gifted a win. The men’s 2nds had an excellent 3-2 win over Newcastle 1st team away, the 3rds won 3-2 against York 1st team but the 4ths, perhaps not surprisingly, lost 4-1 to Leeds Met 1st team.
Men’s tennis returned to winning ways despite our number one being unavailable as he is playing in the Davies Cup for Israel and our number three pulling out of the singles injured, Durham 10 Coventry 2. The 2nds secured an excellent 6-6 draw with Leeds met 2nds. The men’s 3rds and 4ths both lost out to Sheffield and Hull 1st teams.
The women completed their league programme and extended their lead at the top of the Northern Premiership by destroying Loughborough 2nds 12-0. The 2nds lost to Leeds Met 1st team 6-4 with the court time running out and our final singles in the lead – very disappointing for the girls and a great effort. The women’s 3rds destroyed Hull 1st team 12-0.
Women’s soccer played solidly to despatch Northumbria 2-0 to remain safely placed third in the Premiership. The men’s 1st team fought out a dramatic 1-1 draw with Leeds Met and move top of Division 1 with the League Title now in their hands and the 2nds won 4-2 against Teesside.
At the weekend basketball took on Plymouth, who presently sit fourth in the British Basketball League, on Friday and Cheshire Phoenix away on the Sunday. We were on Sky TV for our first encounter and performed brilliantly to win 98-81 and on Sunday we won again 94-82, our first ever back to back wins in the BBL. With Sheffield away on Friday and Newcastle Eagles at home on Sunday we travelled to Worcester in BUCS this Wednesday. Having already won the Northern Premiership we rested most of our first team and used our bench for much of the game and were not unhappy to go down 86-69.
Our women, perhaps our most unpredictable team, once again destroyed their opposition travelling to Sheffield Hallam and coming away with a 66-41 victory. Our women’s 2nds also destroyed Bradford winning 71-22 and they look certain to win their league title – in years gone by we would have been delighted if this side had been our 1st team.
It was the end of the road for women’s netball who were unable to get the result they needed to stay in the Premiership losing 55-30 to Manchester. They will be back and should be congratulated on giving it everything throughout the year! The 2nds conceded in the last seconds but earned a magnificent 36-36 draw against top of the table Sheffield Hallam. The 3rds went agonisingly close losing 36-35 but the 4ths will have been more than pleased with their 32-20 win to stay top of their league.
Men’s squash secured an important 3-2 win over Newcastle, the 2nds beat the 3rds 2-1 to stay top of their league but the 4ths lost out 3-0 to Hull 1st team.
Badminton had a difficult day with the men losing 7-1 to Sheffield and the seconds losing to York 2nds 6-2. Our women having guaranteed their Premiership survival last week went down 7-1 to a very strong Loughborough side but the 2nds will have been delighted to secure an important 7-1 win against Teesside that will keep them, like the 1st team, safe for another year.
Congratulations to table tennis who recorded their first win of the year winning 15-2 against Liverpool. Congratulations also to our indoor snowboard team who qualified for the BUCS nationals in second place in the North. Four Durham athletes qualified in the individuals with Charlie Bullock winning gold.
Finally, rugby league lost out to York St Johns 28-8 and golf went down 4.5 – 1.5 at Leeds.
Thursday 24th January 2013
The weather, perhaps not surprisingly, played havoc with our outdoor programme but with the odd exception, this turned out to be a marvellous day for the Palatinates. Two more Northern Premier League Titles were secured, two more teams moved a step closer to their title, seeded places either became a reality or a step closer and survival took on a completely new look. A great day for our students in a very competitive market place.
Huge congratulations must go to our women’s badminton who had to beat Northumbria to secure their Premiership survival for yet another year and they duly obliged with a magnificent 5-3 win. Our men’s 1st team got in on the act and secured a 7-1 win whilst our men’s 2nds drew 4-4 with Huddersfield 1st team.
Everyone in Team Durham will be thrilled for our netball club and in particular our 1st team. They have trained incredibly hard all year and at last reaped their reward as they secured a brilliant 34-30 win over Leeds leaving them knowing that they go to Manchester in their final match where a win will keep them in the Premiership. We wish them every success. Our 2nds lost out 37-23 in a tough encounter but our 3rds secured an excellent win against Sheffield 3rds 40-28 and the 4ths won 31-23 against Leeds 5ths.
Our men’s fencing had an excellent win against St Andrews winning 134-116 meaning a win away at bottom of the table Loughborough in their last match should be enough to secure a seeded second place in the Premiership. The 2nds made light work of Hull 1st team winning 135-107, the women’s 2nds were gifted a win against Leeds Met whilst the men’s 3rds were the only team to lose out losing to Newcastle 2nds 129-105
Women’s tennis played our 2nd team and won, as might be expected, to secure the Northern Premiership title for Durham by some considerable margin. The 2nds now have two crucial games against Loughborough 2nds with the overall winners securing Premiership survival. We wish them well.
There will be no Premiership title for the men in tennis as they went down 12-0 to joint top of the table Stirling away. Durham had their number three out injured and lost their number two in the doubles through injury after half an hour conceding both a doubles and singles from the outset, a setback that they never recovered from. The Palatinates are too far ahead of Loughborough in third and so have secured a coveted seeded place for the Championships and provided we can get our injured players back the Championship title remains a possibility.
There were solid results elsewhere in tennis as our men’s 2nds defeated second placed Leeds Met 3rds 8-4 in Division 1A, our 3rds drew 6-6 with high flying Leeds 2nds and our 4ths had a remarkable 6-6 draw with Sheffield 2nds – real strength in depth form the Palatinates who are presently ranked the number one tennis University in Britain.
Our second Premier League title of the day came in Basketball where our men defeated Leeds Met, the only team to beat them so far this year in the Premiership. They won with something to spare 79-64 and won the Premiership with a game still to play. Great effort by them! Our women will have been hugely disappointed to lose to Leeds Met at home and will miss out on a seeded place. It was the tightest of games with the Palatinates scoring with three seconds to go to tie the scores at 70-70. You cannot draw in basketball and our women lost out in extra time to some deadly three point shooting from Leeds Met. Our second teams had different experiences with the men losing out to Northumbria 63-50 but the women defeated Newcastle 2nds 51-45 to move well ahead at the top of their table and moved a significant step closer to promotion.
Men’s 2nds and 3rd squash both secured important 2-1 victories against Huddersfield 1st team and Leeds 2nds to move first equal in the same league. Women’s squash did brilliantly to win 4-0 away at Newcastle but the 2nds lost out by the same score line to Sheffield 1st team.
Huge congratulations to table tennis who secured their first win of the year with the 2nds defeating Leeds 2nds 14-3 away.
Volleyball was always going to have a tough day as they took on the number one University in the country. Our men lost out to unbeaten Northumbria 3-0 and the women’s 2nds also lost out 3-0 to Northumbria 2nds but the men’s 2nds recorded a 3-0 home win over York St John’s 1st team.
The only game to be played outdoors was men’s lacrosse at Loughborough. Because of games played they sat equal top before the start of play but a 12-1 away win for the Palatinates moved them one step closer to the Premiership title. The weather would appear to be the only threat to the defence of the Northern Premiership and yet another unbeaten season. Our women did not play but will have smiled when they heard Loughborough defeated Birmingham as the Palatinates now need one win from two to secure the title.
At the weekend Durham took on both Oxford and Cambridge at rugby fives and the Palatinates made light work of their task defeating first Oxford 142-89 and then Cambridge 124-91. Excellent results against the two supposed power players in this sport.
Thursday 17th January 2013
A Happy New Year to everyone!
As we move four days into term we can already look back on a magnificent sporting start to 2013 with some huge wins in BUCS, a strong Christmas period and yet another memorable re-union sport weekend in London.
Pride of place goes to our women’s rugby. Durham has been known for years for its men’s rugby but it is safe to say that the women’s game really did come of age on Wednesday 16th January 2013. With all but one of the team back fit they took on the mighty Loughborough in freezing conditions. As always the Loughborough athletes were fit, skilful, strong and mobile but for once they were no match for the Palatinates as Durham dominated the set piece and were too strong outside as they cruised to a convincing win, Durham 37 Loughborough 5 to move to the top of the Premier League for the first time in our history.
At this stage I should say a huge thanks to our grounds staff who worked all day to get the rubber crumb fit for the women to be followed at 6.30 by the men. The 1st team, minus four of their pack, was too strong for the old enemy and won with some highly accomplished rugby, Durham 34 Loughborough 7. The points in the Premier League now read Durham 43, Leeds Met 27 and Loughborough 20 – game over with three to play!
The 2nds travelled to second placed Edinburgh 1st team in Premier B which was always going to be a very difficult encounter in freezing conditions. One of the keys to winning is that it needs to become a habit and with less than two minutes to go the Palatinates kicked a long range penalty to secure a 27-26 victory. Premier B now looks like this, Durham 2nds 32 points, Loughborough 2nds 21 points and Edinburgh 1sts 17 points.
Congratulations to Josh Beaumont, (St Aidan’s) on being selected to play for Sale in the Heineken Cup and more importantly on his selection as captain of the England Students Rugby team – a great honour. Congratulations also to Simon Hammersley (Hild/Bede), Josh Bayford (Post Grad) and Harrison Collins (Hatfield) on their selection in the England Student Rugby squad.
Women’s basketball, who couldn’t buy a win in the early part of the season, defeated Nottingham Trent 122-31 to continue their move towards a top two position and a precious seeded place in the Championship draw. Their finishing position is now in their hands as a convincing win against Leeds Met at home will give them the league place they need.
Women’s volleyball travelled to the once super power of Leeds Met and made light work of a 3-0 win to stay second behind Northumbria in this top northern league.
Finally, women’s soccer was gifted a result by Nottingham in the Premiership and move to 3rd in the Northern Premiership. Only men’s golf lost out losing 4-2 to UCLAN.
So what happened over Christmas?
Our basketball side almost made it three out of three in the league. A 95-92 win against London Lions and a 101-96 win over Cheshire Phoenix pulled us back close to the mid-table pack. Improved shooting from the three point line might have helped as we went down by eight to Surrey Heat but we have given ourselves a chance to move up the table in the second half of the season with some thrilling performances.
Our women’s soccer will have been hugely disappointed to go out of the FA Cup in a game where they found hitting the woodwork considerably easier than hitting the net. They went out losing 4-2 away to Sheffield United but were back to winning ways as they hit four past Tynedale at the weekend without reply.
Hockey started back in the northern leagues this weekend with some excellent results. Our women’s 2nds recorded an excellent 0-0 draw away at Sheffield Hallam in the Northern Premiership before putting nine past Wigton on Sunday to move to a remarkable second place in the League. The men’s 2nds also had an excellent first win back after Christmas in the Northern Premiership as they defeated Bowden 2nds 3-1. Our women’s 3rds won 4-1 against Morpeth but in truth could have doubled that score in a game they dominated.
Finally, the first weekend of the year saw large numbers of past and present students get together in London for our sport alumni weekend. On the Saturday evening large numbers of past students and some present got together for a lively social at the Boat House in Putney. The following day the past and present got together in hockey, lacrosse and on the river.
There were five hockey games reflecting, as always, a fantastic in-put from our former students and they turned out two very strong first teams. The Palatinates looked very calm and assured in the women’s game and ran out 5-0 winners but the men had to score late on to secure a 4-3 win against the past. A huge thanks to all our past students for their support and commitment to Durham.
Men’s lacrosse got together for the second year running reflecting the growing strength of this sport at Durham and it was great to see everyone again.
Our rowing alumni turned out in numbers and six eights made up of past and present students took to the water. It was especially pleasing to welcome back rowers from some years ago and it was even more pleasing to see the high standard of rowing from all the crews. Congratulations to former student, Andy Riley, who rowed in the winning eight for the second year running! A big thanks to past and present for making the rowing such an enjoyable occasion.
Thursday 13th December 2012
As I look back on the first term of this academic year it is fair to say that our students should be extremely proud of themselves after a magnificent first term of sport in the British University Championships. Durham sit 2nd overall behind Loughborough and our women remain ranked as the number one university in team sports in the Country. Durham sit at the top of eight Premier Leagues with our closest rivals Loughborough and Bath at the top of five each. This is outstanding!
More excellent news came our way today as England Lacrosse named Durham as the first University in the Country to be awarded performance status. Huge congratulations to all our athletes throughout the club, both past and present, who all richly deserve this accolade. I hope the many past students who played lacrosse at Durham will feel that they had a major part to play in this recognition.
The last five days have been crucial for our women’s fencing as they were in action this weekend and again this Wednesday. At the weekend they will have been delighted to have defeated Birmingham 129-113 but found the going tough against Edinburgh and York where they lost 103-133 and 101-119. On Wednesday they took on Manchester in a must win match and the Palatinates reversed their away result winning convincingly 135-101 and securing their Premier League status for another year with three games still to play.
Our women’s football players were back in action this weekend in the FA Cup. As with the men’s FA Cup they have to win through preliminary rounds to get into the actual Cup and Durham won their first three qualifying rounds convincingly and so to the first round proper. Durham University took on Blackpool at home and this was a much tougher encounter but two goals in each half saw the Palatinates move into round two with a 4-0 win. They will now play Sheffield United away in the next round. Tough!
Our women footballers were back in action on Wednesday in the Futsal League programme where they are defending British Champions. They destroyed Newcastle 18-2 and did the same to Sunderland winning 16-4. They will however have been bitterly disappointed to lose to the team they beat in the final last year, Northumbria, who reversed the score on us winning 4-2. The good news is that the Palatinates finished top of their league on goal difference and move safely into the last sixteen of the Championship.
There were few hockey games this weekend but the women’s 2nds suffered a rare defeat in what has been an excellent year so far, as they went down 5-3 to highly rated Bowden. The men’s 2nds had another well-earned draw, this time against Timperley, with the score ending 2-2. The men’s 3rds had another convincing 7-0 win over Durham City.
Our basketball team had a hugely frustrating weekend on Friday and Sunday. On Friday they led Manchester Giants by 17 after the first quarter but will have been hugely disappointed to lose in the end by three. On Sunday they took on the top of the table side and again led at half time but ended up losing again, this time by fourteen.
Back to Wednesday and some final games to wrap up.
Our tennis club continue their remarkable year as our women’s 4ths defeated Newcastle 2nds 8-4 to move into the last eight of the Conference Cup. Our men’s 3rds defeated Northumbria 2nds 10-2 to also move into the last eight of the Conference Cup. Excellent depth in our performance teams!
Our women’s 2nds lacrosse destroyed, as befits the clubs performance status, Sheffield 1st team 23-2 to remain top of North One. Our men’s 3rds went down 14-5 to Hull 1st team.
Our men’s volleyball continued their excellent form defeating Manchester 3-0 and our women’s volleyball 2nds had an excellent win over Hull 1st team winning 3-2.
Golf drew 3-3 in the Conference Cup but won the play off to secure their progress into the next round of the Conference Cup. Our men’s 2nd team table tennis lost out 11-6 to Sheffield 2nds.
In closing can I take this opportunity of wishing everyone a very Happy Christmas and we look forward to welcoming our students back next term to what promises to be a fascinating six months of sport.
Friday 7th December 2012
As our canoe points hit the BUCS table Durham moved over a hundred points clear of third placed Birmingham whilst our Wednesday programme, reduced by the weather, proved to be a magnificent success story for the Palatinates. This was to be the biggest test of the year for many of our Premier League sides and our students came up with some of the best performances I can ever remember!
Our women’s lacrosse travelled to Championship favourites Birmingham having drawn 8-8 earlier in the year at home. Considerable planning and training went in this one game and the Palatinates performed outstandingly to secure top spot in the Premier League, Birmingham 6 Durham 11. Great result! The 2nds took on third placed Leeds Met and dispatched them with some ease to stay top of North One, Leeds Met 3 Durham 14.
Men’s rugby travelled to second placed Leeds Met following a very close encounter earlier in the year at home. This was a quite magnificent performance from the Palatinates, who will have sent ripples through the university rugby world with this result, as they led at half time 33-0. Final score Leeds Met 10 Durham 43. The Premier League table is worth looking at as Durham sit top with 38 points and second sit Leeds Met with 23 points! Remarkable!
The 2nds travelled to play Manchester 1st team who sit third in Premier B. Manchester must have the largest pool of players to pick from of any university in Britain and this would always be a massive challenge for a second team but Durham again performed magnificently as they ran out 42-10 winners to go six points clear at the top of Premier B.
This was the biggest game to-date for Durham men’s basketball as they took on joint top of the Premiership Loughborough at home with only six 1st team players fit to play. The Palatinates were magnificent and despite easing off in the final quarter ran out winners, Durham 95 Loughborough 77, to go three points clear in the Premiership. The women took on Nottingham Trent in the Premiership and when this side is on form they are absolutely devastating. The final score was Durham 119 Nottingham Trent 15. The women’s 2nds continued to dominate their league winning 62-46 against York St Johns 1st team but the men’s 2nds lost out to Sunderland 1st team.
This was a huge day for tennis and in particular our women. The 1st team sat three points clear of Loughborough but had to travel to the lion’s den in what would be a league deciding day. In the end a strengthened Loughborough team was no match for the Palatinates as the day ended Loughborough 2 Durham 10. Six points clear with three to play! The 2nd team, in the same league, faced third placed Nottingham in what looked like a banker for the opposition but the Durham girls were absolutely outstanding with our final singles player fighting back from a set down to win 2-1 to win the match for Durham 8-4. The women’s 3rds secured an excellent 6-6 draw with Northumbria 1st team to stay second in their league.
The men’s Northern Premiership tennis is a straight fight between what look to be the two best teams in University tennis, Durham and Stirling, as they sit out of sight of everyone else. Durham took on Leeds Met, as they continue to fight for supremacy, and won 12-0 with a great deal to spare to stay joint top of the Premiership. The men’s 2nds will have been disappointed to lose a close match to top of the table Leeds 1st team 8-4.
Fencing had another good day but neither 1st team was in action. The women’s 2nds took care of the Bradford 1st team winning by a massive 135-40 showing excellent strength in depth. The men’s 2nds also dispatched Bradford 1st team 145-64 whilst the 3rds won a close fought match against York 2nds 119-112.
In netball the Durham 2nds faced a very difficult away fixture against Sheffield 1st team and lost out 43-26 but there were excellent wins for the 3rds who beat Sheffield Hallam 3rds 42-29 to move above them into third in their league and for the 4ths who beat Huddersfield 2nds 26-22 to also jump above their opposition into third.
The only hockey game to survive the weather saw Durham men’s 3rds secure a 1-1 draw with Leeds 2nds.
Women’s squash had a very tough match against Leeds Met and will not have been disappointed to come away with a 2-2 draw to stay clear in second place in North One. The 2nds had an excellent 3-1 win against York 1st team to also stay second in North Two.
The men’s 2nds, 3rds and 4ths all won without reply 3-0 against Northumbria 2nds, Leeds Met 3rds and Leeds Met 2nds.
Our men’s 1st team badminton secured a well-earned 4-4 draw whilst our 2nds defeated Leeds 3rds 6-2. Our women’s 2nds lost out to Newcastle 1st team 6-1.
Our men’s 2nds volleyball lost out 3-0 to Sunderland 1st team but our women’s 2nds recorded a win over Bradford 1st team.
Finally, men’s table tennis lost out to York 1st team in a close encounter 10-7.
Monday 3rd December 2012
As we approach the end of term one of this academic year Durham received an early Christmas present as the Palatinates moved to number two in the British University points table. We sit forty points in front of Bath and over a hundred points in front of Birmingham who potentially remain our main threat. Our women still remain number one in the country and have moved eighty points ahead of Loughborough. Our men sit fourth overall.
This was a weekend our canoeists will remember for some time to come and not just because of the freezing conditions. It was the weekend of the wild water race and on the Saturday the Palatinates excelled. Phil Dean (Post Grad) won the men’s kayak and finished third in the open team event alongside Matt Fletcher (John Stephenson) and Scott Creswell (Josephine Butler). In the women’s event there was a one, two as Durham dominated the kayak category with Alison Auld (Post Grad) 1st and Beth Barratt (Josephine Butler) 2nd.
On the Sunday Phil Dean made it a double gold winning the sprint category in style whilst Alison Auld picked up an excellent bronze. Congratulations to the whole club who finished as the number 2 University in Great Britain, our best result since 2004. Huge thanks to our alumni who worked tirelessly to run this event on behalf of BUCS. We are most grateful to you all – thank you.
For the record the canoe points are not yet on the overall points table! Good for us!
With most hockey games falling foul of the weather the men’s 2nds survived and gained an excellent 1-1 draw with Sheffield Bankers and the men’s 3rds ran out 5-1 winners against Hild/Bede.
The wildcats found the going tough against Sheffield trailing by twelve after the first quarter and after this very slow start they never recovered and ended up losing by the same margin.
Thursday 29th November 2012
A hugely exciting day of sport where Durham came up with some crucial wins and our women moved to the top of the BUCS points table overtaking Loughborough as the number one women’s sporting university in the Country. Our challenge now is for our women to try to stay there for the remainder of the year.
The result of the day came in women’s soccer where the Palatinates travelled to unbeaten, top of the Premiership, Loughborough in a game full of controversy. No substitutes were allowed as both sides failed to register their subs with the referee. Durham went 2-0 up, had their goalkeeper sent off, our stand in keeper saved a penalty and the manager and coach for Loughborough were dismissed from the ground. Final score Loughborough 0 Durham 2. A great result against the number one university side in the Country.
Women’s hockey had their most important game of the year as they also travelled to Loughborough knowing the winner would go three points clear at the top of the Premiership. Durham, out to defend their British University title, were hugely professional as they secured a vital win, Loughborough 1 Durham 2. Our women’s 2nds, who have had a great season to-date will have been disappointed to go down 3-2 in the Trophy away against Birmingham 2nds but our women’s 3rds had another excellent win in the Conference Cup beating Newcastle 2nds 4-0.
Our men’s hockey played really well at Loughborough, dominating possession, and will feel very disappointed to have lost out 3-0 to three short corners. The men’s 3rds will have been delighted to beat Newcastle 2nds 3-1 in the Conference Cup.
It was charity rugby day against Northumbria and the crowds turned out in force on a very cold night on the rubber crumb. The Palatinates put in a first half where the three quarter line performed superbly on the back of a very powerful pack performance. The Palatinates stayed clear in the Premiership winning 47-12. Leeds University 5th team appear to have a side that could take on their own first team as they defeated Durham 3rds, unbeaten this season and defending Conference Cup holders 12-10.
Our women’s rugby just held on to a win at Birmingham earlier in the year but this was a completely different game as the Palatinates thrashed their opposition, in a fast flowing and skilful performance, 63-0 to move second in the Premiership.
There is a real danger that we start to take our tennis for granted but this was another great day for them. They are ranked number one in Britain at the moment and showed no mercy for their opposition yesterday. The men defeated Manchester 10-2 to stay joint top of the Premiership. The men’s 2nds, made up of all first years, crushed Leeds Met 2nds in the Trophy 10-0 whilst the 4ths will have been disappointed to lose to Sheffield 1st team in the Conference Cup.
Our women took Nottingham apart winning 12-0 to stay top of the Premiership, Durham have still to play their full team this year. The 2nds thrashed Sheffield Hallam, also 12-0, to move into the last eight of the Trophy alongside the men’s 2nds. The 3rds had an excellent win over Leeds 2nds in the Conference Cup 8-0.
It was an excellent day for fencing as the 1st team travelled to Manchester, missing two key fencers, but did enough to beat second place Manchester 127-123 to keep their aspirations of a seeded place alive. Our 2nds and 3rds took on Newcastle 2nds and 3rds and showed real depth as the 2nds won 126-119 and the 3rds won 131-116.
Basketball had a slightly mixed day but the men’s 1st team had a great result against Glasgow winning 101-66 away. The 2nds will have been disappointed to lose out to Sheffield 2nds 58-64. The women’s 1st team travelled to top of the table Loughborough and showed enough to suggest that if we meet up in the Championship last 16 at some stage we could get the better of them. The Palatinates lost 70-61. Our unbeaten 2nds put paid to Sheffield 1st team in the Conference Cup 48-35.
We only had one game of lacrosse due to weather and our women took on Newcastle. The girls were outstanding in the first half leading at half time 12-0 and they eventually ran out 19-4 winners. It is the big one next week as the Palatinates travel to Birmingham knowing they will need to keep one or two of their players quiet to get a crucial win.
Golf secured a determined 3-3 draw at Sheffield to stay on course for the play-offs for the Premiership next year.
Women’s volleyball ensured another short game, this time against Manchester, as they won 3-0 in double quick time. The men will have been disappointed but not altogether surprised to lose 3-1 to one of the power houses of men’s volleyball Sheffield Hallam.
Our men’s 2nds badminton won 7-1 in the Conference Cup but our women’s 1st team lost out in the Premiership 8-0 to Leeds Met. Our women’s 2nds drew 4-4 with York 2nds but will have been delighted to go through on games won in the Conference Cup.
Women’s squash will have been disappointed to lose 3-1 to joint top of their league Northumbria and will look to go on to consolidate their second place in the weeks ahead. Our men’s 2nds won 3-0 against Sheffield 2nds in the Conference Cup and the 3rds also won in the Conference Cup beating Newcastle 3rds 2-1. Our women’s 2nds will have been delighted with their 4-0 win over Bradford 1sts in the Conference Cup to move into the last eight.
Netball found Leeds Met impossible to handle as they went down 80-20 but the 4ths will have been really pleased to progress in the Conference Cup winning 32-23. Men’s table tennis 2nds exited the Conference Cup losing 10-6 to Sunderland 1st team.
Finally, congratulations to last year’s sport woman of the year Jen Walsh who competed for the England under 20 cross country team in Spain and won the overall event. She followed this by competing in the cross country trials for the European Juniors and finished second behind Emelia Gorecka after which the UKA described her performance as nearly ‘one of the biggest upsets in recent times’. Well done to Jen!
Tuesday 27th November 2012
This was a weekend for rowing, fives, triathlon and rugby to take centre stage as our other teams continued their quest for league success.
In the end the weather meant that the GB rowing trials on the water never took place but the ergo selection did go ahead. Eleven of our thirteen men and women secured personal bests; showing winter training is going well. Six of our men made it into the top ten in the under 23 category which was outstanding and particular congratulations must go to Callum McBrierty (St Johns) and Angus Groom (Hatfield) who finished 2nd and 3rd in this section.
The Palatinates competed in the Fives Championships this weekend and our top two pairs David Butler (Hatfield) and Peter Hanton (Hild/Bede) and James Tilston (Hild/Bede) and Julian Aquilina (Grey) made it to the semi-finals before losing out to Bristol and Cambridge. Congratulations to them for making it to last eight. David Butler also made it to the last eight of the individuals.
Our Triathlon team was also in action this weekend and will have been pleased that the men recorded a 4th place in the team event. Interestingly their time of this year would have won the event last year hence proving yet again that the standards at the top end of British University sport continue to rise.
The problem for any Durham side is that our opposition tend to treat every game against the Palatinates as a cup final and this was certainly true of St Andrews 1st team who took on defending champions Durham 2nds in the last 32 of the rugby Trophy. Durham started the game far from full strength due to the late notice of the weekend fixture and this was a highly physical game littered with very big hits. Durham replaced at least four players through injury but led 3-0 at half time.
Sensible penalty kicks at goal, England please note, gradually extended the lead until the final score of Durham 27 St Andrews 3 proved very convincing against a vastly improved St Andrews 1st team.
Women’s hockey decided to make life very difficult for themselves as they gave away two early penalty flicks against bottom of the table Ben Rhydding but the Palatinates are too experienced to let this kind of result get away from them and ran out 6-3 winners. The 2nds continue to perform outstandingly well as they defeated Bolton 4-2. Very well done to them.
This was always going to be a tough hockey match for the men’s 1sts as they faced the team immediately above them in National North away from home and they eventually lost out 2-0 to Leek. The men’s 2nds continued their upward movement with an excellent 2-0 win against Formby whilst a 10-3 win from the 3rds, smarting from Wednesday’s result, keeps them one point clear at the top of their table. The 4ths had their annual battle in the weekend league with Hild/Bede 1st team and did enough to win 4-2.
Our basketball team found the second half of their BBL games a real challenge this weekend as they travelled to Leicester Tigers and Cheshire. In both games they were in touch with their opposition after the first quarter and at half time but fell away to second half onslaughts. Leicester Riders 91 Durham University Wildcats 68 and Cheshire 106 Durham University Wildcats 72
Our water polo 2nd team found the going too tough as they lost out at Dundee and our women’s table tennis, on their first outing of the year, were unable to hold their opposition.
Friday 23rd November 2012
Our Premier League sides started their return fixtures for their leagues on Wednesday and all other leagues have now made it to half way. Every game is now crucial as teams strive for top two seeding in the Premier Leagues, league titles, mid table respectability or survival. Yesterday started to define our year with numerous crucial wins and some disappointments along the way.
Hockey had a season defining day as both our men and women sent close rivals Birmingham away empty handed. Birmingham women had to thank their goalkeeper for a quite brilliant display in this clash of the titans as a late, highly deserved, goal from the Palatinates secured Durham a 2-1 win and moved them clear at the top of the Premiership. The men got right back in the race for the title after last week’s draw with a very well earned 2-0 win against one of their two big rivals.
Our women’s 2nds drew 1-1 against Sheffield 1st team in the cup last week and entertained them back in Durham to a 9-1 mauling as the Palatinates amazingly moved second in North Division One. It was an excellent day for our women as the 3rds defeated Leeds 2nds 3-0 and the 4ths won 1-0 against Newcastle 3rds.
The men’s 2nds lost 3-0 to Manchester 1st team, always a huge challenge, the 3rds crashed to a very unusual 6-0 defeat to Leeds Met 1st team whilst the 4ths had an excellent 1-1 draw with Northumbria 1st team. Please note the all 1st team opposition.
Tennis had a hugely difficult day with the men at Loughborough and the women at Leeds Met., the only team to take a point off them this year. The men had to grind out all their games against this tennis super power coming away with a magnificent victory to retain their place at the top of the Premiership, Loughborough 2 Durham 10. The women had to make changes to their side in their very difficult fixture but the depth at Durham is now impressive and the girls played exceptionally well to secure a 10-2 win and retain their Premiership lead.
The women’s 2nd team was always going to struggle due to the changes above them and lost out 12-0 to Loughborough 1st team. There was however a magnificent win for our 3rds 12-0 against Newcastle 2nds and our 4ths took Leeds Met 4ths apart 10-2. The men’s 4ths, perhaps not surprisingly, lost out to Newcastle 1st team 10-2.
Men’s basketball held on to top spot in their Premiership as they scored baskets at will from all over the place crushing Northumbria 97-57. As I predicted last week the season is changing for the women as they reversed their early season result against Northumbria winning 65-59 and they still have every chance of moving from bottom in the Premiership to a top two finish. The men’s 2nds will have been disappointed to go down 68-57 to Leeds 1st team.
Volleyball continue to push for their right to be in the top four sides nationally. The women travelled all the way to Bangor and won their three sets in half an hour before getting back on the bus and travelling home. The men found it a little tougher against the once super power of Leeds Met, dropping a set but winning 3-1. The men’s 2nds won 3-1 and women’s 2nds also recorded a win to make it a full house for volleyball.
Our lacrosse women continue to work through their fixture list before having to travel to Birmingham for their match of the year and dispatched Edinburgh 18-4 away whilst the 3rds got back on the winning trail defeating Leeds 2nds 12-4 recording an excellent result. The men’s 3rds went down heavily to Leeds 1st team.
Men’s football will have been delighted to reverse last week’s cup loss to Newcastle grinding out a deserved 1-0 win at home and they will be delighted to sit top of North Division One. Our women, struggling massively with injuries and illness, went down 4-0 to a strong Birmingham side. They will hope to be back at full strength within the next two weeks.
Our golfers got back on the victory trail with a 4-2 win against Leeds. Best moments of the day came with one of our players fighting back from five holes down to draw and how would you like this in match play? You turn up to play Durham and the Durham player holes in one at the first to go one up – time to go back to bed!
Fencing had a difficult day as they went up against the number two ranked team in Britain. Durham had serious aspirations of winning this one and led after foil and sabre but the epee team of Edinburgh was too strong as Durham lost 126-113. The 2nds defeated the 3rds in the same league 134-89 whilst the women’s 2nds went down to Northumbria 1sts 130-111.
Women’s squash defeated Manchester Met 1st team 4-0 to stay joint top of North Division One but the men’s 1st team stayed second in North Division Two losing to top of the table York 3-2. They now have to win their return fixture to have any chance of winning this league. The men’s 2nds lost 2-1 to Leeds 2nds but there were 2-1 wins for the 3rds and 4ths against Northumbria 2nds and Northumbria 3rds respectively. The women’s 2nds, perhaps surprisingly, lost out 3-1 against Newcastle 2nds.
It was not a good day for netball as all four teams lost out. The 1st team went down heavily to Loughborough at home 17-55, the 2nds lost to Newcastle 2nds 43-33, the 3rds just lost out to Bradford 1st team 21-20 whilst the 4ths lost to Leeds Trinity 2nds 30-26.
There was very little happening in rugby this week but this did not stop our 3rds defeating Newcastle 3rds 26-12 to stay top of their league.
Our women’s badminton team will have been pleased to take a game off Birmingham as they lost out 6-2 and the 2nds will have been very disappointed to lose out 5-3 to Northumbria 2nds. The men secured a 4-4 draw with Hull 1st team whilst the 2nds crushed Leeds 3rds 7-1.
Finally, it is getting closer as table tennis lost out 9-8 to Newcastle but the 2nds struggled against Northumbria losing heavily.
Tuesday 20th November 2012
In the BUCS points table the Palatinates have held onto third but the race for second and third remains very tight although Birmingham may yet be our greatest threat to holding on to second place. Loughborough 2,200, Bath 1,581, Durham 1490, Exeter 1444, Birmingham 1,411 and Leeds Met 1,277.
Durham hosted the British University cyclocross this weekend and the women will have been delighted to have come away with bronze in the team event whilst the men secured more BUCS points by finishing fourth. Dan Bryant (Hild/Bede) finished 6th, Katharine Broadbent 7th (Hild/Bede) and Charlotte Shields (Van Mildert) finished 10th. Congratulations to the cycling club and key personnel from the region who hosted an excellent event.
Women’s hockey continue to hold on to joint top spot in National North securing a 2-0 away win at Cannock but the men lost out to top of the table Sheffield Hallam 2-1. Durham’s ploy to take off their goalkeeper with three minutes to go to add an extra outfield player almost worked as the Palatinates won a penalty corner on the whistle. I suspect they might have been disappointed to only get a second short corner for an infringement on the line which they eventually failed to convert.
Below 1st team level it was another excellent weekend for Durham hockey. The women’s 2nds kept the pressure on the top four in the Northern Premiership with a solid 1-1 draw away at Timperley. The 3rds continued to pull away at the top of their league with a 3-1 win against Durham City.
The men’s 2nds are now finding their feet and had an excellent 3-0 win against York to start their climb up the league. The men’s 3rds defeated Newcastle University 2nds 2-0 to stay out at the top of their league and the 4ths crushed the medics 9-1.
Women’s soccer rested a number of players in the County Cup, failed to convert numerous chances and will have been very disappointed to lose 2-1 to Birtley Town.
In mid-week our women’s volleyball lost to Northumbria 3-1. This was a highly significant result. Our opposition has not dropped a set this year in any form of volleyball and top the national League outside of BUCS and are therefore the number one volleyball team in Britain. The sets were close and provided we can avoid Northumbria in our half of the draw in the knock outs Durham should at least get to the BUCS final and then who knows?
Thursday 15th November 2012
This was a quite remarkable Wednesday at the top of our programme as the Palatinates won twelve Premier League games, drew two and lost only one. They moved to the top of eight Premier Leagues and went ahead, for the first time this year, in the head to heads with Loughborough. With the top two seeded to the last sixteen of the championship Durham still have a chance of getting men’s fencing and hockey and women’s rugby, soccer and basketball into the top two alongside our eight leaders. The statistics of course do not tell the whole story as we competed in some amazing matches.
Tennis had a wonderful day with the men’s 1st team winning as expected against Coventry 8-4. In truth we saved match points in the singles and doubles before finally winning the match to hold on to top place. The men’s 2nds had a brilliant 8-4 win away in the Trophy against Edinburgh 1st team with five of the six games going to super tie breaks. There were wins for the 3rds and 4ths 10-2 and 10-2 against Newcastle 2nds and Leeds Met 4ths in the Conference Cup.
The women’s tennis 1sts carried on their merry way with a 10-2 win against top of the table Nottingham to move top of the Premiership themselves whilst the women’s 2nds destroyed Leeds Met 2nds in the Trophy 10-2.
In basketball Durham faced Worcester, who also play in the BBL and who sit considerably higher than Durham in this league, and in a pulsating game, the Palatinates won through 69-68 to stay top of the Premiership. The 2nds had an excellent 73-60 win in the Conference Cup.
The women finally showed, what we always knew was the case, that they can match last year’s team as they trounced high flying Sheffield Hallam 101-59. Watch this space from here on in! The women’s 2nds recorded a victory that was off the scale beating Teesside in the Conference Cup 119-4.
And so to Rugby. The 1sts entertained Newcastle but these days this is hardly a local derby to be concerned about as the Palatinates cruised to a well-earned 42-17 win to stay well clear in the Premiership. The 2nds destroyed Nottingham Trent 2nds 101-5 to stay top of Premier B whilst the 3rds took revenge on Northumbria 2nds, who beat our 4ths last week, winning 48-13 to stay top of division two. The club have now won 23 out of 24 games.
The women’s rugby took on Edinburgh and proved far too strong as they stayed second in their Premiership winning at a canter 55-0.
Women’s Lacrosse had the hardest game of the day, on paper, as they travelled to unbeaten Loughborough and this really was going to be a test of how good the Palatinates really are. The final score of Loughborough 3 Durham 15 probably answered all our questions. The women’s 2nds faced Leeds 1st team in the Trophy having beaten them away last week. This was always going to be tough with the winner having every chance of going all the way to the final. Durham went 6-0 down before recovering to lead 7-6 but the Palatinates were eventually to lose 10-9 with virtually the final play of the game. Our men’s 1st team made light work of Nottingham winning 17-1.
Women’s hockey came up against a surprisingly strong Manchester but ground out an excellent 1-0 win to stay top. The 2nds faced Sheffield 1st team away in the trophy and drew 1-1 but will have been delighted to have won through on penalty flicks 7-6. The 3rds won 4-1 against the Hull 1st team in the Conference Cup.
The men’s 1st team led a very strong Sheffield Hallam 3-1 with ten to go and will have been disappointed to draw 3-3.The men’s 2nds led 2-0 against Manchester before going out of the Trophy 3-2. The 3rds won 2-1 against Leeds Met 2nds in the Conference Cup whilst the 4ths lost out 2-1 to Sheffield Hallam 2nds.
Men’s fencing made it a disappointing day for Loughborough as they took them apart, Durham 135 Loughborough 76. The women’s 2nds lost in the trophy to Leeds Met 1sts 131-123.
The result of the day undoubtedly came in women’s badminton as they secured a magnificent 4-4 draw with Loughborough – a great result for the Palatinates. The 1st team men surprisingly went out in the Conference Cup 5-3 to Sunderland but the 2nds live to fight another day winning 6-2 against Leeds 2nds.
Women’s soccer put in a very professional showing against Northumbria winning with something to spare 5-1 to stay joint second in the Premiership. Overall it was not a good day for soccer as the 1st team men lost for the first time going down 2-0 in the Trophy away at Newcastle and the 2nds lost to Sheffield Hallam in the Conference Cup 3-0. There was also a second defeat for the women’s 2nds against their nemesis Hull losing 3-0 in the Conference Cup.
Our men’s 1st team squash will also have been bitterly disappointed to go out of the Conference Cup losing 3-2 to York but there were wins in the same cup competition for the 2nds and 3rds 3-0 against Sheffield Hallam 1sts and 2-1 against Leeds 2nds. The women’s 1st team won convincingly against Leeds 2nds to stay second in their league.
Huge congratulations to men’s water polo who, with no university swimming pool to train in, still managed to travel to top of the table Edinburgh and win 11-8 to top North One.
Volleyball faced a very difficult day as they took on the number one university in the country at men’s volleyball. Northumbria eventually won 25-14, 25-22, 25-21 but the Palatinates will know they can now compete at the highest level. The 2nds lost to Newcastle 1sts and the women’s 2nds again lost out to Northumbria 3-0.
Our netball women ended as the only losers in the Premiership going down to Manchester 46-23 whilst the 2nds also lost out Sheffield Hallam 2nds in the Conference Cup 47-34. The 3rds recorded a win in the Conference Cup.
Finally, our golfers lost for the first time this year going down 4-2 to UCLAN 2nds whilst table tennis again lost out, this time to Sheffield 1st team in the Trophy.
Tuesday 13th November 2012
It occurred to me whilst watching sport this weekend how lucky I am to be able to watch sport of such an amazing standard. I think it is perhaps all too easy to take as read our success without thinking about the hard work and talent that lies behind our many victories. This weekend, amongst our fixtures, we took part in the National Hockey League (men and women), the BBL, the women’s FA Cup, the Men’s European tennis finals, the regional volleyball knock outs and the British University dry slope Ski and Snowboarding Championships and overall we did quite well!!
On Saturday I watched our 1st team women’s hockey who took on Liverpool in National North. They were simply outstanding as they played hockey out of the top drawer knocking seven past their opponents without reply to stay joint top of their league. The 2nds won again crushing rivals Whitley Bay 2nds 4-0 whilst the 3rds upset opposition even closer to home winning 4-0 against Durham City.
Our men’s 2nds secured another draw against Whitley 1-1 whilst the 3rds won again at home 3-1 against Morpeth. The 4ths lost out to Wilton 1-0.
From the 1st team hockey I went to watch our women play futsal (indoor soccer) against Leeds Met. Durham sit as defending British Champions and this was always going to be our toughest group game as we had lost to the same opponents on Wednesday in the Premiership. The skill level and the physicality of this game had to be seen to be believed. Playing on a stop clock (the time is only recorded when the ball is in play) the sides played for nearly two hours with the final result Durham 13 Leeds Met 8.
I was not able to watch our men’s tennis team representing Great Britain in the European University Championships. At the end of the day an injury and a subsequent retirement put paid to our chances as Durham went out in the semi-final to the University of Cologne 3-2. Not bad to be in the top four tennis universities in Europe!
Sunday took me back to women’s soccer and what was for us our third round of the FA Cup. We at last got a home draw and took on Wakefield. I lost count of the chances Durham failed to convert which was a good thing for our opposition as for the third FA Cup tie in a row Durham scored ten, Durham 10 Wakefield 0.
Our hockey teams were in action again and our men’s 1st team will have been delighted to have secured a 1-1 draw away at Belper. Our 2nd team, who have been finding it tough this year, will have been equally thrilled to pull back from 2-0 down to secure a 2-2 draw against Alderley Edge. Finally, there was another excellent win from our high flying women’s 3rds who secured a 2-0 win against Morpeth.
The evening led me to our BBL game against Plymouth Raiders as one of our Sky TV games. The opposition was aptly named raiders as they inflicted our heaviest defeat of the season as Durham went down 68-113. The crowd was magnificent throughout despite Durham being unable to match the pace and directness of our opposition. We play Worcester at home in the Premier League on Wednesday in a top of the table clash and Durham will need to be at their best for this one.
More students play volleyball at Durham now than at any other time in our history and this is reflected in the standard of our University sides. This weekend was about qualifying for the national finals in February. Our men’s and women’s 1st team were far too strong for our opposition with both sides winning all their games without dropping a set. The men defeated Central Lancs., Bradford and Liverpool whilst the women defeated Newcastle, Bradford, Liverpool and Manchester. The 2nd teams found the going tough against all 1st teams but the men ran Sheffield close and scored 12 and 8 against Northumbria, arguably the best side in Britain and the women will have been delighted to have beaten Central Lancs.
In a marvellous weekend showcasing the strength and depth of Durham sport our skiers and snow boarders went off to Edinburgh in the dry slope British University Championships. This was an excellent all round team performance from fresher’s and senior skiers alike. Imogen Yardley (St Cuthbert’s) finished 6th in the slalom and 11th in the giant slalom. The highlight of the weekend came in the snowboarding where Captain, Charlie Bullock, won gold in both the giant Slalom and the Boarder Cross – a great effort from him and some much needed British University points for Durham.
Finally, in water polo our 1st team men will have been delighted with their start recording a 9-7 win over Leeds. The 2nds will have been disappointed to lose out by the odd goal to Lancaster 1st team 4-3 whilst the women found it tough, going down to St Andrews and Edinburgh.
Friday 9th November 2012
In another hugely challenging day the Palatinates secured numerous big wins but once again had their share of disappointments.
Important wins this Wednesday moved Durham above Exeter in the British University Points table but Bath jumped above Durham by 100 points as the short course swimming points worked heavily against the Palatinates. Durham 3rd.
The result of the day came in men’s tennis as the 1st team took on defending British Champions Stirling, unbeaten in the last two years. This was a match of the highest quality and the Palatinates had to fight every step of the way in their 8-0 win. We were unable to finish the last two singles, winning in one and level in the other, as once again we got into time trouble but nevertheless we will be delighted to top the Premiership for the first time in our history.
Men’s Tennis had a good day all round as the 2nds won brilliantly 12-0 against Manchester 2nds, the 3rds won 10-2 against Northumbria 1st and the 4ths drew 6-6 with Newcastle 2nds. Women’s 3rds tennis went down in a very tough match 8-4 to Newcastle 1sts but the 4ths had an excellent 12-0 win against York 1sts.
Durham University lacrosse remains the power in the land and our men took on unbeaten Loughborough at home yesterday. I am not sure what the opposition must have been thinking when they found themselves 9-0 down after fifteen minutes and will have been pleased, in the end, to only lose 22-2. The men’s 2nds destroyed Leeds 2nds 22-0 but there was an 11-1 defeat for the 3rds.
Our women’s 1st team cruised to a 15-3 win against Manchester but the big result of the day saw our 2nds defeat Leeds 1sts away 10-5 to go top of North Division One.
As everyone beats everyone in the rugby Northern Premier League the only consistent factor remains Durham University. The Leeds players were undoubtedly up for this match but a full strength Palatinate side simply blew them away in Leeds winning 63-22 – bonus point time! The 2nds didn’t play and the 3rds cruised to a 65-7 win against a Newcastle side. The 4ths had a massive challenge against Northumbria 2nds and went down to two late penalties 28-24.
Our women, still well short of a full side, again looked the part against Newcastle away as strength and fitness handed them an excellent 29-5 win to keep them up among the front runners in their Premier League.
Men’s Hockey came bouncing back as the first secured a 1-0 win away at Leeds, the 2nds won brilliantly again, defeating Liverpool John Moores 1st team 8-0 whilst the 3rds mirrored their team mates winning 8-2 against Northumbria 1st team. The 4ths lost out to Leeds 2nds 3-0.
The women’s hockey strolled to the top of the Northern Premiership with a 5-1 demolition of Leeds Met. The 2nds, who have been on a great run, will have been disappointed to go down 2-0 to Northumbria 1sts. There was an excellent 0-0 draw for the 3rds against Sheffield Hallam 1sts but the 4ths lost out 3-1 to Leeds 3rds.
Men’s soccer will have been delighted to secure a 2-1 win at Liverpool and move top of North Division One and the 2nds won 4-0 against Leeds Trinity 1st team. The women’s 1st team knew they were going to find it tough against Leeds Met away and despite taking an early lead they eventually went down to two late free kicks losing 3-1. They will need to re-group for the FA Cup on Sunday. The 2nds had another excellent 3-1 win against Leeds 2nds.
The super power of volleyball, for many years, has been Leeds Met but yesterday our women made them look very ordinary as they powered to a 3-0 win conceding 11, 3 and 4 respectively in the three games. The men’s 1st team cruised past Manchester away from home 3-1 whilst their 2nds went one better winning 3-0 against York 2nds.
Our golf 1st team remain unbeaten but again returned a 3-3 draw to remain well placed in North Division One whilst the 2nds had an excellent 4-2 win over Leeds Met 2nds.
Our squash teams continued to fire on a brilliant day of results as the men’s 1sts won 4-1, the 2nds won 3-0, the 3rds won 3-0 against Huddersfield 1st team and the 4ths also won 3-0 against Sheffield 3rds. There was an absolutely outstanding 3-1 win for our women’s 1st team against Newcastle 1st team to keep them joint top of North Division One and a win for our 2nds – a full house for squash!
Women’s badminton need to ensure they outperform Northumbria if they are to survive in the Premiership this year and they have started well coming back from 4-2 down to secure a 4-4 draw against them away from home. It will all now rest on Northumbria’s return to Durham after Christmas. The 2nds also secured a solid 4-4 draw against York 1st team. The men’s 1sts went down 6-2 but the 2nds recorded a win.
Our netball 1st team lost out to a strong Leeds side 49-16 but it was a good club day for netball as the 2nds won 39-26 against Hull 1st team, the 3rds won 52-16 and the 4ths won again 45-17.
The two real disappointments of the day came in basketball and fencing.
In basketball our men lost to Leeds Met by ten in the surprise of the day whilst our women also lost 59-44 to Leeds Met. The men’s 2nds found the going too tough against Sheffield 1st team but there was another excellent win for the women’s 2nds 58-22 against Teesside 1sts to stay well clear in North Three.
Men’s fencing lost out to St Andrew’s away 127-106 and will hope to reverse that result when at full strength at home. The women, in their first match of the year, lost 109-104 against Manchester and will need to reverse that at home. There were wins for the men’s 2nds and 3rds 135-85 against York 2nds and 135-88 against Bradford 1st respectively but the women’s 2nds lost out to Newcastle 1st team.
Finally, rugby league and table tennis continue to find their first wins impossible to come by.
Monday 5th November 2012
In a wonderful weekend of sport Durham welcomed back five of its London Olympic alumni for two days of celebrations (Lou Reeve, Emily Taylor, Steve Rowbotham, Rob Morgan and Sophie Hosking). On the Saturday morning Olympic coach Rob Morgan, silver medal at London 2012, gave a marvellous talk on the challenges of coaching at world level. In the afternoon alumni, students and school children were able to row with an Olympic athlete. In the evening Steve Rowbotham, Beijing bronze medallist and fifth at London 2012, gave a heartfelt after dinner speech on his experiences as an Olympian. Finally, on Sunday Sophie Hosking, gold medallist at London 2012, officially opened our rowing tank which is now named after her.
23 blades will now be placed on the walls of the tank to mark the 23 former Durham students who have rowed at the Olympics. The tank has proved a fantastic addition to our resources as 500 students, who had never been in a boat before, have already been through our ‘learn to row programme’ since the start of this term with 300 more to follow. Amazingly, four of this year’s Olympians learnt to row at Durham.
Our basketball team played for the first time out of our Stockton Campus in the BBL against Manchester Giants. By half time the Durham players were in serious trouble trailing by a massive 18 points having failed to convert numerous opportunities. In the third quarter the Durham University Wildcats changed the game on its head putting Manchester in serious foul trouble after five minutes. Going into the final quarter Durham had got within three points of their opposition and as the Giants got in yet more foul trouble the Wildcats pulled off one of the greatest victories and recoveries in our basketball history winning 69-64. The Durham Wildcats now sit a remarkable 6th in the BBL!
Our men’s and women’s hockey 1st teams took a weekend off and left centre stage to the 2nds. The men and women 2nds both play in the highest leagues that they can play in on both a Saturday and Wednesday and so the going can get tough. Great credit must go to our women’s 2nds who had a quite excellent 2-0 win against leaders Kendal to move within one point of them. They defended for much of the game but broke to devastating effect. The men were less fortunate going down 6-2 to Deeside.
The men’s 3rds won a top of the table clash with Richmond 4-2 and the women’s 3rds won well against Alnwick 2-1. The 4th team men will have been pleased to run out 3-0 winners against Durham City.
Women’s soccer face a hugely difficult week, away at Leeds Met on Wednesday and the FA Cup third round next Sunday, but found few problems taking apart Birtley Town 6-0 this weekend.
Finally, congratulations to the seven members of our women’s rugby team selected to play for Durham County as they ran out 12-3 winners over Northumbria.
Friday 2nd November 2012
In a reduced programme because of cup byes and late starts in cup matches the Palatinates finally kicked their season in to gear with some big results where it mattered. At the close of play we sit top in five Premierships and second in three more. The season is beginning to take shape! The top five in the BUCS points table are Loughborough 1,737, Exeter 1,380, Durham 1,366, Bath 1,350 and Birmingham 1,344. It is all very close!
What has been slightly disappointing this year is that we have been coming off slightly worse in the head to heads with Loughborough but, as of today, the Palatinates are beginning to set the record straight. Rugby once again set the pace with the 1st team getting a fiercely fought win 10-6 away at Loughborough in very difficult conditions. The 2nds took on Loughborough 2nds, also away, and will have been delighted with a 13-12 win and both teams now sit top of Premier North A and B. The 3rds won handsomely against Sheffield Hallam 2nds 40-19 and the 4ths cruised to a win over Bradford 1st team 65-12.
Loughborough got the better of our women’s rugby 1st team winning 20-15. The Palatinates, who played really well, will not have been too disappointed and will be keen to get them back to Durham after Christmas with their squad hopefully back to full strength.
Our women’s tennis took on Loughborough 1st team at home and our 1st team was far too strong winning 12-0 to go top of the Premiership. The 2nds found the going too tough against Nottingham 1st team, also in Premier North, going down 12-0. The men made very light work of Leeds Met as our 1sts also won 12-0 away in the Premiership. The 2nds had an excellent 10-2 away win against Sheffield Hallam 1st team and the 3rds also recorded a win in the Conference Cup.
Women’s lacrosse took on Birmingham in a hugely important game with the opposition having virtually the same side that was unlucky not to have won the national title a year ago. It was an up and down game with both sides leading at various stages but the Palatinates will probably be happy with their 8-8 draw. The 2nds, not surprisingly, did not have the same problems as they ran out 21-1 winners against Newcastle 2nds.
The men’s lacrosse travelled to one of the strongest sides in Britain, Sheffield Hallam, and came away with a 19-3 win. The 2nds won convincingly 12-2 away against Leeds Met 2nds.
The outstanding result of the weekend saw our basketball side win 91-71 in the BBL against Mersey Tigers. The team was back in action away at the mighty, unbeaten, Loughborough but cruised to the top of the Premiership with an excellent 91-78 win.
Women’s volleyball will clearly be among the top sides in Britain this year and won convincingly 3-0 away at Liverpool.
Hockey had a magnificent weekend getting results just about everywhere and came back to BUCS with some of their strongest results yet. The women’s 1st team won convincingly 5-2 away at Nottingham. The 2nds crushed Liverpool 5-0 whilst the 3rds won 2-1 against Newcastle 3rds in the Conference Cup. The 4ths were unlucky to lose out to York 1st team in the cup 3-2 on penalty flicks.
The 1st team men will be bitterly disappointed to have lost 1-0 away at Nottingham but the 2nds recorded their first win of the BUCS year 9-0 against MMU. The 3rds won their conference cup 6-1 against York 2nds and the 4ths won their Conference Cup match 9-0 against Northumbria 3rds.
Women’s football bounced straight back from last week’s set back as they destroyed Nottingham 7-1 away from home in the Premiership. The 2nds had an excellent 5-0 win against Newcastle 2nds in the Conference Cup. The men’s 1sts continued with their very good season and will have been slightly disappointed to draw 0-0 with equal top of the table Chester. The 2nds had an excellent win against Newcastle 2nds in the Conference Cup.
Golf will have been happy to escape with a 3-3 draw away at Liverpool John Moores in very difficult conditions on a difficult course.
Women’s 1st team squash won convincingly 4-0 whilst the men’s 1st team won in the Conference Cup 5-0. The men’s 4ths lost out in the Conference Cup.
Netball found the going very tough against Newcastle in the Premiership away from home losing heavily. The 3rd team netball went down 39-28 in the Conference Cup but there was an excellent 45-15 win for the 4ths in the Conference Cup.
Men’s badminton 2nds won 5-3 away in the Conference Cup against Sheffield Hallam 2nds. Rugby league went down to Northumbria and the men’s table tennis lost out to Sheffield.
Finally, congratulations to our men’s cycling hill climb team who won silver in the British University Championships to gain Durham valuable British University (BUCS) points.
Friday 26th October 2012
We can be fairly confident, after two weeks of matches, that there are unlikely to be any easy weeks this year. 59 Palatinate sides took to the field this week led by 21 first teams. Their immediate problem was that they were facing 42 opposition first teams with all eight hockey sides coming up against first team opposition. Despite this the Palatinates had some big Premier League wins, three particularly outstanding wins and a few disappointing moments along the way.
When under pressure the first place to turn is to Durham University rugby club. The 1st team, with many changes due to injury and illness, continued on their road to hopeful glory with a convincing home win over Nottingham, 29-3. The 2nds took on Nottingham Trent 1st team winning 20-11, the 3rds beat Sheffield 2nds 29-0 whilst the 4ths ran out 13-5 winners over Teesside 1sts. The women, smarting from their Premiership defeat of last week, destroyed visitors Nottingham 1st team 46-7.
The first outstanding result of the day can be found in women’s tennis. Last week our 1st team drew 6-6 with Leeds Met 1st team and this week it was the turn of our 2nd team to play the same opposition in the Premiership and they too came away with a brilliant 6-6 draw – a great help to our 1st team’s league position! The 1sts got back to winning ways defeating Loughborough 2nds, as expected, 10-2 whilst the 3rds had an excellent 12-0 away win against Hull 1st team and the 4ths won 12-0 against Leeds 3rds. An excellent day for women’s tennis!
Men’s 1st team tennis also got back on the winning road with an 8-4 win away at Manchester in the Premiership. The 2nds lost out to Leeds Met 2nds 8-4, the 3rds lost to Sheffield 1sts 10-2 but the 4ths earned a solid 6-6 draw against Hull 1st team.
The second outstanding result of the day came in women’s hockey where our 2nd team women recorded an excellent 5-0 win over Newcastle 1st team in North Division One. Our women’s 1st team will accept their 0-0 draw with Loughborough although they dominated much of the game whilst the 3rds had an excellent 5-0 win over York St John’s 1st team. The 4ths lost out 6-1 away against Hull 1sts.
The men’s hockey will have been disappointed to have gone down 3-1 to Loughborough at home as will the 2nds, who led for long periods against Newcastle 1st team before losing 3-2. There were also defeats for the men’s 3rds against York 1sts and the 4ths who went down 3-0 against Leeds Met 1sts.
The third outstanding win came in men’s soccer where our 1st team took on a fast, physical and highly competent Leeds Met 1st team. They soaked up long periods of early pressure before coming away with an excellent 3-0 win. The 2nds were less fortunate going down 2-1 to Teesside 1st team.
The big question of the day was would there be a big gulf in class between Durham and Loughborough in women’s soccer? In the end this was women’s soccer out of the top draw. Durham conceded in the second minute of the game but from then on in chased and harried the defending British Champions and will have been bitterly disappointed to lose only their second British University League fixture in two and a half years 1-0. The 2nds will be equally disappointed as they went down by the same score to a very strong Hull 1st team in a game they dominated throughout.
So what of lacrosse? Our women travelled to Newcastle in the Premiership and completed the job they set out to achieve, in winning convincingly 14-5. The 2nd team were far too good for Manchester 2nds winning 22-0 whilst the 3rds conceded in the last five minutes to lose 8-7 to York 1st team.
The men’s 1st team, also in the Premiership, travelled to the home of club lacrosse in Manchester but showed no mercy in winning 22-1. The 2nds and 3rds played a dead rubber against each other in the same league with the 2nds recording a 21-0 win.
Men’s basketball played their first super Wednesday fixture at Queen’s campus in front of a student crowd of over 200. This is a side with real Championship pedigree and they destroyed visitors Glasgow by a massive 110-49. The men’s 2nds lost out to Teesside 1st team. Our women, a side still settling into this year’s Premiership, lost out to Loughborough 62-47 but the 2nds had an excellent win against Bradford 2nds 53-16.
Women’s volleyball, another tip for championship success, made very light work of Manchester, winning 3-0 but the men’s 1st team went down to Centre of Excellence Sheffield Hallam 3-1 in a closely fought contest. The 2nds men also lost out to Bradford 1st team.
Men’s fencing had a great result in the Premiership winning 128-107 against Manchester 1st team. At full strength this is a strong team! The 2nds lost out to Newcastle 2nds 125-117 but the 3rds won against Hull 1st team 125-111.
Netball 1sts found the going tough against Leeds Met in the Premiership losing 56-25 but things are improving. The 3rds and 4ths both got their seasons back on track winning well 41-22 and 18-12 respectively but the 2nds lost out away from home.
Both men’s and women’s badminton lost 6-2 although there was a good 7-1 win for the men’s 2nds against York 2nds and a 6-2 win the women’s 2nds against Teesside 1sts.
Golf 2nds drew again, this time 3-3 against Hull 1sts whilst both table tennis teams went down to heavy defeats.
Finally, as I write Lauren Collinson (Stephenson College) is about to tee-off in the final round of the BUCS Golf Tour Event at Woodhall Spa in Lincolnshire. Lauren is our first ever competitor at a BUCS Tour Event and despite being surrounded by some of the very best amateur golfers in Britain she currently sits joint top of the leader board after the first round. We wish her well in the final round.
Thursday 18th October 2012
With more teams in Premierships, with the exception of Loughborough, than any other university, with more 2nd , 3rd and 4th teams promoted to higher leagues than we have ever had before and with all our opposition treating Durham fixtures as cup finals this will be a tough year.
Our first Wednesday will be a day we will remember for a long time and certainly not always for the right reasons. We had twenty two 1st teams playing but came up against 37 opposition 1st teams placing real pressure on our 2nd, 3rds and 4ths.
British University Ranking at end of week two: Durham 3rd.
In terms of individual sports pride of place has to go to our lacrosse teams. Our 1st team women ambled through their 16-0 win over Edinburgh in the Premiership. The 2nds crushed Leeds Met 1st team 18-4 and the 3rds won 22-2 against York 1st team. The men made our ladies look pedestrian as the 1st team, upset by their relatively close game at the weekend, ran out 39-0 winners against Sheffield in the Premiership, a record win for Durham, whilst the 2nds won 21-4 against Leeds Met 2nds.
Our rugby men’s 1st team had a hugely challenging game as a very physical Leeds Met. took a 10-3 lead. The Palatinates would not have been sorry to hear the final whistle as they eventually won out 21-15 to keep their season very much on track.
The 2nd team rugby took on a very strong and well prepared Edinburgh 1st team and will have been pleased to win 25-20. The 3rd team went 5-0 down before defeating York 2nds 80-5 and the 4ths beat York 3rds 76-0. Our women will not have been pleased with the outcome of their Premiership game against Leeds Met as having led 10-0 they went down 34-10. Injuries and a below par performance might be disappointing but this side will have a good season.
This was a big day for our men’s and women’s hockey 1st teams who travelled to one of England hockey’s Centres of Excellence at Birmingham. In truth I would have been happy with one point from the two games but the Palatinates were magnificent as the men won 1-0 and the women drew 0-0 – a great start to their campaign for the year.
The 2nd teams found it tough in Division 1 as the men lost 3-1 to Sheffield 1st team and the women went down 3-1 to Leeds 1st team, both away. The women’s 3rds had a brilliant 7-1 win against York 1st team and the 4ths drew with Northumbria 2nds 1-1. The men’s 3rds beat the 4ths 1-0.
The women’s soccer 1st team had an excellent start to their Premiership careers away at Birmingham. Leading 2-0 at half time they had to rely on a break-away goal in the last minute to win 3-2. The men’s 1st and 2nds had good starts as they both secured away draws against Leeds 1sts, 2-2 and York 1sts, 3-3.
Golf had a very solid day as the 1sts ran out 3.5-2.5 winners over Sheffield 1st team and the 2nds drew 3-3 against York 1st team.
Men’s volleyball played defending British Champions Leeds Met away and showed enough to suggest that they could have a brilliant year as they ran out 3-1 winners. Bangor decided not to travel to play our very powerful women’s team who start with 2 points without playing a game. Both our 2nd teams lost out to Northumbria 2nds.
So what happened to our tennis? Our men played Loughborough in the Premiership and were 2-2 after the doubles. A long dispute over seedings followed and Durham led in all the single matches only to be timed out on court time and had to concede the match to their opposition. Our women lost their final match on a tie break to Leeds Met in the Premiership to end with a 6-6 draw. The girls played extremely well and still have their number one to return from injury. Both sides will be a power in the land this year.
Elsewhere in tennis the men’s 2nds had an excellent 6-6 draw against Leeds 1st team but the 3rds lost to Leeds 2nds and the 4ths lost out to Sheffield 2nds. The women’s 2nds play in the Premiership of British University Tennis, one of only two teams to do so, and went down 12-0 to Loughborough 1st team. In contrast the 3rds had an excellent 12-0 win against Leeds Met. 3rds.
Basketball had a day they will not forget in a hurry! The men’s 1st team was simply too strong for Northumbria as they ran out 72-58 winners in the Premiership. The women, defending British Champions, led by one point against Northumbria in the Premiership with three seconds to go and went down to a two point shot on the final buzzer 60-61. The men’s 2nds lost out to Northumbria 63-64 but the women’s 2nds won against Newcastle 2nds 58-42.
Squash had a very difficult year last year and will have been absolutely delighted with their start winning all six matches. The men’s 1sts won 3-2 against Sheffield Hallam 1sts, the seconds won 3-0 against Huddersfield 1st team, the 3rds won 2-1 against Leeds 2nds and the 4ths won 2-1 against Newcastle 3rds.The women won convincingly 4-0 against Manchester Met 1st team and the 2nds won 4-0 against Newcastle 3rds.
Men’s badminton won 3-2 whilst the 2nds went down 3-2 against Huddersfield 1st team. The women faced the huge challenge of travelling to Birmingham in the Premiership and went down 8-0.
Men’s fencing had a difficult day with their 1st team travelling to a very strong Edinburgh and went down 129-107. We are however confident they will do well this year. The 2nds recorded an excellent 135- 75 win against Newcastle 3rds but the 3rds lost to Leeds 1sts 127-114 whilst the women’s 2nds went down to Sheffield 1st team.
Netball found the going tough as all four teams lost out. The 1st team lost heavily away at Loughborough in the Premiership, the 2nds lost to Leeds Met. 3rds 46-21, the 3rds lost 30-24 to Sheffield 3rds and the 4ths lost out 19-13.
Table tennis men’s 1sts lost 11-6 to York but the 2nds recorded their first win. Finally rugby league lost out to a very strong Teesside outfit 48-24.
Monday 15th October 2012
Wednesday will tell us just about everything we need to know about our potential for this year as we embark on our first full Wednesday of competitive fixtures. We probably couldn’t have picked a much harder fixture list with many of our big teams playing Birmingham, Loughborough and Leeds Met. As we get ready for the challenge a number of our athletes were involved again this weekend.
Pride of place, perhaps surprisingly given the time of year, goes to our women’s cricket as our very powerful team cruised through the first regional indoor round – Newcastle 88-3 Durham 89-4, Edinburgh 67-5 Durham 68-1, Durham 96-5 St Andrews 64-4 and Durham 122 for 4 Newcastle 97-4.
Our women’s football team were again in action in the FA Cup and the result hardly reflects the challenges of the game. The Palatinates went one down and ten minutes into the second half were defending bravely in an attempt to hold on to a 3-2 lead. Break away goals followed as fitness and talent finally told with Durham moving into the next round on the back of an 8-2 victory.
Our all-conquering men’s lacrosse team took to the pitch for the first time this year against Edinburgh City and recorded a 16-11 win. The opposition was the strongest we have faced for some time, outside of international opposition, and this was reflected in the same side defeating our 2nd team 15-2 the next day.
Hockey had an interesting day in their leagues. Our women’s 1sts lost their first game of the year 1-0 at home to a steady Whitley Bay side. Two disallowed second half goals, outstanding goalkeeping and nearly a dozen unconverted short corners evidenced that we should have got more from this game. The remaining women’s sides had a ball. The 2nds won well at Chester 3-0, the 3rds won 2-1 against Newcastle Ladies whilst the 4ths recorded a huge win away at Marton 15-0.
The men took a 2-0 lead early at Wakefield and will have been disappointed to be pulled back to a 2-2 draw. The 2nds went down 2-0 to Leeds and even our 3rd team was held to a 0-0 draw against Newcastle Medics. The 4ths lost 3-2 to Newcastle University 2nds – a good performance.
We have one of our strongest ever intakes of first year undergraduates in tennis this year and this was reflected in an excellent first win in the Northern Premier Club League for our 2nd team men, winning 3-2.
Our basketball team lost out by more than they would have liked against the best side in Britain, the Newcastle Eagles. The next five games in the next two weeks will almost certainly define their season.
Two missing results from Wednesday saw our women’s squash 1sts and 2nds both win 4-0 against Newcastle which bodes well for the season ahead.
Thursday 11th October 2013
The year has started for real as rugby took to the field a week in front of everyone else in the British University Championships. In truth we would not have chosen to send our men’s 2nds and our women’s 1sts to play the Birmingham 1st teams away nor would we have wanted our 1st team men to travel to Kingston Park to play a vastly improved Northumbria but such is life.
The 1st team men faced a fast, aggressive and highly capable Northumbria and will have been content with their 12-7 half time lead. The second half was equally challenging but the Palatinates were gradually able to turn the screw and gained a valuable bonus point in winning 29-7. We are up and running.
The 2nd team travelled to Birmingham to play their much fancied 1st team in Premier B. Only rugby and cricket have Premier B leagues and Durham and Loughborough are the only two 2nd teams in this league. The 2nds were outstanding as they ran away with a great first win away from home 26-11. The 3rds played against a tough Leeds 3rd team at home and won 40-35 whilst the 4ths, made it a full house, winning 14-9 against Sheffield Hallam 3rd team.
Our women made the mistake of allowing Birmingham to score with ten minutes to go to cut the Palatinate lead to 15-14. Durham then camped on their own line for the rest of the game but huge credit must go to all concerned as they held on for a first away win ever in this sport at Birmingham.
An up-date from the weekend games saw our women’s lacrosse 1sts travel to Oxford and we managed to hit the frame of the goal several times before running out as superb 14-5 winners. Our 2nds took on Edinburgh 1st team who travel to play our 1sts next week and defeated their Scottish opponents. It could be interesting next Wednesday!
Yesterday our women’s hockey took the opportunity to travel to Leeds where our 2nd team defeated the Leeds 1st team 3-0 and our 3rds secured a well-earned 0-0 draw against their 2nds
And so to our friendlies against Newcastle who wisely chose not to play some of our big teams but even so the results did not exactly favour them. We left at home 13 of our Premier League teams to get in some extra training.
One Premier League team we did send was our men’s basketball who ran out convincing 90-67 winners and we were delighted with a very strong performance from the 2nds who won equally convincingly 72-48.
Our men’s and women’s volleyball look extremely strong although the men found the challenge harder than our women. Despite some close games the men ran out 3-0 winners but the women proved far too strong for their opposition winning with ease 3-0.
In golf our 1st team ran out 4.5-1.5 winners whilst the 2nds won convincingly 5-1. A great start for them and we are hopeful of another excellent year!
It was all Durham in the badminton as the women won convincingly 6-2 and both the 1st and 2nds men won 5-3. This was our first win for the men at first team level against Newcastle for four years.
We sent mainly first year undergraduates to take on Newcastle at tennis with the men returning with an excellent 8-4 victory and the women drawing 6-6. Great strength in depth in this sport!
Men’s 1st team squash took on a Newcastle team in a league above them and will have been very disappointed to lose having led 2-1 and having been up in both final games. In contrast the 2nd team ran out 5-0 winners although the 3rds went down narrowly 2-1.
Netball had a diffiuclt day as they went down across their programme.
Our 2nd team men’s lacrosse, who have lost a lot of players from last year and will take time to settle, lost out to a strong Newcastle’s 1st team 7-4 and our rugby league went down 24-0.
Monday 8th October 2012
Our women deliver as the Palatinates find some of the early challenges tough!
Women’s rugby played a warm up game against Northumbria and despite conceding the first points to an excellent try the Palatinates scored the next fifty points without their opposition getting near to a second score. Final score Durham 52 Northumbria 5. The major downside was the loss of three key players through injury who we are unlikely to see again this side of Christmas. We wish them all well on their road to recovery.
Women’s hockey retained their three point lead at the top of National North with a brilliant 4-0 win away at Doncaster and the girls are already six points clear of the third placed side. The 2nds will have felt unlucky to lose 1-0 to Hallam but the women’s 4ths had an excellent start to the year with a 4-0 win against Caledonians.
Our women’s soccer surprisingly went 1-0 down away at Tynedale but went on to blow their opposition away winning 7-1.
1st year rower, Trude Meyer, returned to Norway to their national championships and won the coxless pairs and coxed fours national titles and finished second in the single scull. Great results for her and we are delighted she has joined us this year.
Huge congratulations to Kira Roberts who graduated in June this year having missed out on the Olympics. She won the national sabre title placing her ranking as number one in GB and we will follow her road, hopefully to Rio, with great interest over the next four years.
After a fantastic start to the year our men’s hockey 1st team will have been disappointed to lose 3-1 away in a tough fixture at Olton placing them third in National North. The third team men continued their amazing winning run, undefeated last season, with a 6-0 win against Wilton. The 2nds and 4ths found it much harder with the 2nds going down to Bowden 2nds 4-2 in Premiership North – a very tough league for them, and the 4ths lost out to Morpeth 2-0.
Finally, Durham University Wildcat basketball team so nearly got two results out of two on the road. They travelled to Crystal Palace and trailed by 12 at half time. They came back well in the third quarter and with two seconds to go they got a player free to take a three point shot but the ball ran round the basket and out with the Wildcats losing 79-76.
Monday 1st October 2012
We are back up and running for what we hope will be another highly successful year for Durham University Sport.
We can reflect on a wonderful Olympics and Paralympics and I must take this opportunity of congratulating our rowers, Sophie Hosking (former student) on her Olympic Gold, Lily van den Broecke (present student) on her Paralympic Gold, Rob Morgan (former student) on coaching a crew to Silver and to Steve Rowbotham, Lindsey Mcguire and Lou Reeve on making Olympic finals – wonderful!
Congratulations also to Gemma Collis (present student) who competed in the Paralympic fencing and to our coach Laszlo who was the GB fencing coach for the Paralympics.
Back at base, for some of our teams, the season has started and what a start it has been!
Congratulations to our shooting team who competed long after the end of the summer term and their excellent results count towards this year’s BUCS championships. Durham won the short range scoring 597.79 out of 600. Their score was higher than the GB under 25 teams on the day. They finished 4th in the long range and took the overall BUCS gold.
The individual championship was won by Will Broad with his score on the day effectively seeding him 12th in the World.
Men’s and women’s hockey had an excellent pre-season, including, for the men, a 6-0 win at Oxford, and have turned this into a remarkable start to the league programme with both teams winning their first three games.
Our women opened with a 4-1 win at home against Ben Rhydding and followed this with a magnificent 2-0 win away at the mighty Loughborough – one up to the Palatinates in what will be a year of head to heads across most sports against the number one sport University in the Country. Finally, we played against last year’s league winners and this year’s favourites, Beeston. 3-3 after forty minutes Durham decided to play all but the last five minutes of the game in their own half as Beeston laid siege to the Durham goal but a late goal for the Palatinates secured an outstanding win to move Durham top of National North.
Our men have had an equally impressive start and are joint top of National North after hard fought wins against Doncaster 2-1, Khalsa 3-1 and Leek 4-3 with the latter game being very physical.
The majority of our sports look very strong this year but you never really know until the squads take to the field. So how would Durham rugby fair against the Oxford Varsity Team just returning from a week’s training in Portugal? The pack is very similar to last year but the backs are a new line up with four first years taking to the field for the first time in a Palatinate shirt. The telling moment of the game came half way through the first half when Oxford put in to their own scrum fifteen metres from their own line. Their mainly Post Grad pack went backwards at remarkably speed. The Palatinates put away the dark blues 30-11. A great pointer for the year ahead! Well done Durham!
Our women’s soccer team is back up and running and have looked strong in the County league but they started, what they hope will be a long journey this weekend, with one of their preliminary rounds in the FA cup. They travelled to Forrest Hall with three key players out through injury and three not available but made short work of their opposition winning 9-0. Congratulations to number nine, Gemma Nortcliffe, who scored six of the Palatinate goals.
Finally, back to rowing: Congratulations to Franz Imfield, last year’s boat club President and a sabbatical officer this year, current students John Ford and Barnaby Stentiford and last year’s finalist, Phil Congdon who were in the men’s eight that won silver at the International Universities rowing Championship in Kazan representing GB.
Congratulations also to Will Fletcher who won silver in the GB lightweight men’s coxless four at the European rowing championships.