Three University of Nottingham (UoN) victories over Nottingham Trent University (NTU) in the first ever Canoe Polo Varsity events gave UoN their first two Varsity points of Super Wednesday. 

Before the matches Impact caught up with Peter McCull, the UoN Mens’ Team Captain:

“We have a good chance of beating them, we know they have some good players on their team and they’re very fit. It will be good intense match I think”

“I haven’t been to any events because I’ve been studying but we’ve been working up to this one”.

When asked if he thought the UoN team would win the game he said: “I think it will go quite well, we know that our BUCs finish was higher than theirs so we have a good chance of beating them, we know they have some good players on their team and they’re very fit. It will be good intense match I

Men’s Canoe Polo win put UoN on top

Final Score: UoN 7 – 1 NTU

The event kicked off with the men’s game against Nottingham Trent University. The final score put UoN on top, making the game the first win of the event for University of Nottingham. UoN scored in the first five minutes in a very strong start for UoN, who also defended several attacks from Trent in which the opposing side almost scored.

However, during the first half there was a penalty for Nottingham Trent, allowing them to score their first point of the game. University of Nottingham was able to hold firm in the face of strong NTU attacks, leaving a score of one all at the end of first half.

The second half began with a mad scramble to the ball in the middle of the pool, and it was UoN who managed to drive the ball up the pool and score. UoN’s resolute defending continued to frustrate the Trent team, as one after another Trent attacks couldn’t find the net.

The impressive rear-guard action from UoN meant that the Men’s won a relatively comfortbale 7-1, to bring Canoe Polo their first ever official Varsity victory.

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Free-scoring Women’s Team follows suit 

Final score: UoN 11 – 4 Trent

The women’s game followed much the same pattern as the men’s with fierce attacks from Trent being defended well by UoN. Throughout the game there was a fair bit of fighting between players, but at the end of the first half the score was at 5 to 1 in favour of UoN.

The second half brought much of the same as Trent’s strong attack scored twice in the space of five minutes. The University of Nottingham team scores amidst spectacular saves from NTU, however, with UoN grabbing 6 points of their own to take the win 11-4, in a strong showing by both the men’s and women’s canoe polo teams.

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A-Team Exhibition rounds off UoN clean-sweep

Final Score: UoN 9 – 5 NTU

“Trent have got a really good team but we were fairly confident, we’ve done a lot of training for this”

Despite a strong start from UoN, the A-Team exhibition was a  much tighter affair, with NTU only one score behind for a long stretch at the beginning of the game. When UoN scored to make it 2-0, however, the floodgates opened, with UoN grabbing two more points in the face of some lacklustre Trent defending.

NTU offered some resistance late in the first half, as they drove the ball up the pool to reduce the arrears to 4-2, but UoN made a quick recovery to score, leaving Trent 5-2 going into the half-time break.

The second half began with an impressive shot from NTU, which was almost saved by UoN. Just as NTU made gains, however, UoN reasserted their dominance, keeping them trailing behind. More brilliant defence from UoN kept Trent from making the game closer, and despite a late NTU rally, UoN ran out 9-5 winners to complete an excellent day for the Canoe Polo Team.

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Paul Henry, member of UoN A Team, told Impact afterwards that the win left him: “Delighted, it was really good”.

When asked whether or not he expected the result they got he commented: “We knew it would be tough, Trent have got a really good team but we were fairly confident, we’ve done a lot of training for this”.

Hannah Eves

Image: Impact

For all the updates of the 2016 Varsity Series, click here.

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