Tadhg Bogan debuts on tSG with an in depth look into Ireland’s University Indoor championships.
As the fuzzy heads of fresher and final year students alike recover from University/College life to prepare for their inevitable exam-induced panic, there is one blissful source of escape for the University Ultimate players of Ireland. Thankfully, All-Ireland Open Indoor Inter-varsity (IVs) 2016 awaits to welcome the eager and determined players with open arms. At this year’s battleground, the Kingfisher Leisure Sports complex in the heart of Galway city, 24 teams representing nine Universities from across Ireland took to the hard-courts across the weekend of the 19th and 20th of November. With goals of development in mind for all the fresh-faced beginners embarking on their first true competitive IVs, but aspirations of total domination in the hearts of those more seasoned players, the weekend certainly provided action every minute across the three courts of the Kingfisher complex. So, with much to get through, let’s begin!
Harry Mason had a group chat with the University Contributors after UXIR. Read it in full below.
Welcome to the UXIR (University Mixed Indoor Regional) 2016/17 discussion thread! My name is Harry, I’m the University Co-ordinator for the Show Game. This will be a fun new experiment, so let us know any thoughts, and whether you liked it. We’ll be communicating by our slack names, which in most cases line up with our twitter usernames.
We have writers from many different regions, so we’re going to walk through region by region and talk about what happened. I asked the writers to make some predictions before the weekend, so there’ll be a little pre-weekend chat first, before we get onto the post-weekend analysis. A small disclaimer here that by coincidence, the indoor regions of South West/East & London aren’t represented. If this feature proves popular in future (and people volunteer to help our discussion) we’ll ensure they are included in extra discussions. We can only cover what we have writers for, after all!
Sean Colfer reports on Finals day at UKU Nationals
Another domestic season is finished, and nine teams have earned the right to compete at the European Club Championships in Poland in October. The second day at Nationals saw some inclement conditions, some very important games, and some pretty interesting story lines emerge.
Mara Alperin tells us how International Women’s Ultimate Weekend went down in London.
June 27th-28th was International Women’s Ultimate Weekend. Founded by Sophia Wagner of the German National Team, the goal of this weekend was to “bring local communities of female players together, and ultimately, to highlight the global reach and scale of the community of women ultimate players.”
Iceni hosted a skills clinic on Saturday at Clapham Common. Several players ran various skills stations, assisted by our coach, Paul “Voodoo” Waite. Shout-outs go to Mara Alperin, Sonia Komenda, Eleanor Nicholson, Lasma Putrina, Vanessa Lowe, Natasha Doff and Rowan Pearson for their help. We were also incredibly fortunate to have Ultimate legend Anne Mercier (of Team Canada World Games) as a guest coach!
Felicity Perry and Claire Taylor give us their outlook on the final instalment of this years Women’s Tour.
The threat of thunder and lightning prior to Tour 2 meant that all teams were aware that rain was a distinct possibility. Still, nobody expected the rain to hold off until 3pm and gradually increase from a light drizzle to a downpour. It made play interesting for a while, until games were cancelled on Saturday. The sustained rain left the pitches waterlogged, and unplayable.
Cancellation of games meant that the GB Masters did not meet the Mockingjays as expected in the crossover, and had to wait until the Tour Final on Sunday. When they finally met, the game was dominated by the relatively unknown entity of the Mockingjays, a fluid and talented team from Ireland. Neither team had really been tested until the final, and the GB Masters were slow to react to the speed and skill of the Irish.
Josh Coxon Kelly closes out the A Tour previews for the 2015 season.
With rain lashing down around them, the players of Chevron and GB A may have been ready to move to the ‘bog ultimate’ tactics well honed in Mansfield and Wimbledon of years gone past. With their well-trained forehands back to fresher level consistency and layout bids taking players to the next field, surprise will have come as studs held fast allowing these teams to amidst most of June’s rain in one hour. The Watford groundsmen certainly came through with the unexpected A Tour performance of the weekend, and although many games were cancelled, the show pitch held one of the most exciting games of the season so far as a revived Chevron gritted out a sudden-death victory (sealed by a horizontal Tom Martin-Hall) against the Great Britain defensive line.
This victory presented a fork in the knockout structure as Chevron returned to the quarter-finals from their notable absence in Nottingham, and GB found themselves fully humbled after two losses in their pool leave them third, and out of contention for the finals. The other team to beat GB A was the GBU23s. This young squad took a dominant lead in the first half against the seniors, who had an opportunity to get to 11-10, but after failing to convert at 12-9 were unable to stop the U23s from storming to victory with convincing swagger.
Thomas Cliff previews this weekend’s B Tour.
I can’t claim perfection by any means, but what I can claim is that the B tour is an incredibly volatile place to play Ultimate. London Calling once again proved this, making a mockery of any predictions attempted on my part.
Bristol, along with Curve 1 were both surprise factors in the promotion stakes. Bristol used an effective defence which clogged lanes and made resets very difficult, and Patrick Ward and Ben Groombridge (on the offensive and defensive lines respectively) saw a lion’s share of the disc, taking well-judged risks to put their opponents on the back foot. Cambridge were predictably solid, showing their A Tour pedigree in reprising their earlier placement. Finally, Curve much preferred the conditions in London, only losing to Cambridge on their way to an A Tour berth after struggling to adapt to the Nottingham wind.