And so, another year of sport at York is looming. The second year of York Sport’s existence looks like it should be as compelling as its first. With the clubs showing a much more united front, playing in their matching black and gold strips, it will hopefully be a year of York clubs supporting each other as well as themselves.York Sport is a sub-committee of YUSU (the Students’ Union) and is responsible for the provision of sport at the university, through the 59 different individual sports clubs and the College Sport system. We’ve got an awesome new website which will give you more details about all the clubs at www.yusu.org/sport.
Although we are living in tough economic times, which will evidently bring challenges, I hope sport here at York will still be able to develop further. Clubs have had additional training and will need to be more careful with finances than in previous years, but hopefully this will encourage a more prudent attitude which may in fact result in increased financial efficiency, whilst not compromising the standard of sport on offer. With YUSU being subject to Charity Law, the fundraising aspect of many clubs can now be re-focused on raising money for the club itself.
Last year, York managed to rise six places to 41st in the overall BUCS (British Universities & Colleges Sport) standings and I would love to build on this and see York in the top 40 by the end of the year. Wednesday BUCS matches against opponents predominately from across Yorkshire and the North East all count towards our overall standing, as do one-off championship competitions. Some clubs compete in more local leagues as well, usually at weekends.
Although we may not have the state-of-the-art facilities of some of our local rivals, the passion and commitment of York’s sportsmen and women may finally be harnessed to come closer to reaching full potential. York is a sleeping giant on the university sporting landscape and perhaps it is time it was woken up! Last year’s annual Roses tournament between the universities of York and Lancaster demonstrated what York can achieve when people are determined to succeed. Look out for Lancaster coming back fighting after the 2009 whitewash in more than thirty different sports over a May weekend across the Pennines. This year, although the event is away, hopefully droves of York supporters will also make the journey to Lancaster to help bring the Carter-James trophy home for the fourth consecutive year.
The other tournament to look out for is Varsity against York St John. Due to a combination of factors, last year’s tournament didn’t happen, but this year it is returning with a bang! With the decision to hold the tournament over a weekend (27th-28th February) instead of a Wednesday, hopefully it will be bigger and better than ever before. This is the chance to show which of York’s universities is better: let’s just make sure the right one wins!
You might hear about a place called Ziggy’s when you get involved in a sports club. This is THE nightspot for pretty much all York’s sports teams after their matches on a Wednesday night. So if any of this has whetted your appetite for sport at York at all, get down to the Sports Centre at the YUSU Fair on Saturday to see exactly what’s on offer and talk to the people who run the different clubs.