Sitting in a pub in Salford listening to Ben Leatham and Beth Freane sing One D was not how I envisioned my Roses experience ending.
That being said nor did I expect to be rolling up outside YUSU at roughly 12am on Monday morning after the coach broke down. ‘All’s well that ends well’ though as we were relocated to a local pub for a few hours. Several beverages in and all thoughts of Revs and celebrating the rugby win had been lost to the beautiful voices of Mick and Kelly the karaoke maestros of Don’t Tell the Bride fame.
Equally though, spending an entire weekend sleeping rough in a common room was not on my agenda, nor was being so grateful that said common room was not shared with the football boys. If you can sniff out what I mean by that.
The weekend began and ended with hilariously bad coach journeys and an equally entertaining array of anecdotes between them. That being said though, it was the vast amount of sport sandwiched between Friday and Sunday that, of course, takes precedence, and was the most memorable feature. Roses really is one of the sporting highlights of the year, it has been buzzing round the Nouse office as much as any sporting facility on campus, for many reasons and for quite a while.
Just as all competing teams began to lay out their whitewash strategies, we too prepared ourselves. Assembling our team and talking tactics we began to decide on people’s positions throughout the day and set up our live blog like Barton’s drop goal. Straight to the point and in for the win. Always one point, tweet or post ahead. Although we may not have won Roses based on points, York can leave Roses 2016 reassured in other ways. For one, we have a select choice of chants. Our repertoire extends past one tune based solely on destroying the opposition and we can sing them as loudly as four Lancaster stands in the stadium.
Testimony to this would have to be at the Opening Ceremony. Many things were belted out at York’s end of the pitch. Despite the various dances, cheerleading displays and choice music, the support of York still stands out the most. As does security’s resilience to beer fuelled boys and bad behaviour. The Women’s Football score soars above and beyond expectations, 7-0; these Roses girls most certainly can. I’ll be the first to admit I was unsure as to how the weekend would pan out. On arrival Lancaster’s concrete mass of a campus seemed never-ending and the Sports Centre far, far, away.
However as various elements of play gathered momentum, so did our reporting and the atmosphere grew alongside it. Even in the pelting rain of Sunday, aware of our loss, a stand of enthusiastic York supporters gathered together – beer in hand enjoying the sport almost as much as the end of their drinking bans.
Hopefully glimpses of these moments, of sporting excellence and atmosphere shine through in this supplement. Happy Roses everybody.