2013 BSKA Nationals Report

That’s the way the ball bounces….

By Helena Corner and Kyle Crombie

firsts4

The weekend of the 9th-10th March saw Edinburgh University Korfball Club’s 1st team head down to a snowy Norwich for BUCS National Championships at the University of East Anglia. The competition was sure to be higher than qualifiers but Edinburgh were raring to go after 4 games unbeaten in the Scottish league and their highest ever victory (24-9) against league rivals Glasgow
EUKC’s group opponents were to be Cardiff, Bristol and Sheffield University. Their first, and toughest group match would be against Cardiff and unfortunately for EUKC, Cardiff were quick off the mark and punished Edinburgh’s early mistakes with 4 quick goals. Despite recovering before half time, with 2 goals for Max Wartelle, along with Poppy Simpson-Wells, and Rosemary Nolan and dominating much of the possession, they were unable to level the match with losing the game 8-7.

Edinburgh needed to refocus and look at the positives from their first group game as next up was Sheffield Uni who finished 5th at BUCS 2012. Both teams were evenly matched in the early part of the game with the score 4-4 at half time. However, disaster struck for Edinburgh in the second half with Nitin Lalwani severely injuring his knee, having to retire from the tournament after scoring in the first half. As Edinburgh had made all of their substitutions they would have to play the remainder of the game with 7 rather than 8 players. EUKC came back on court in fighting spirit playing 15 minutes of incredibly determined Korfball, fighting for every loose ball and playing tight defence. Two goals by Captain Ella Paul, despite her division being a player down, gave EUKC a 6-4 lead but this brought a change of ends meaning EUKC were now defending with a player down. A torrent of attacking chances followed for Sheffield but 2 quick goals by Kyle Crombie for Edinburgh pushed the lead to 8-4 putting the outnumbered division back into attack. EUKC managed to survive a late rally by Sheffield and took the well-deserved 8-6 victory.

firsts3

With Edinburgh on a high their final group match against Bristol was a comfortable 13-4 victory, with a notable 5 goals for Kyle Crombie, and the first goals of the tournament for Cathy Campbell, Sarah Kelly, Chris Kay and Jamie Miller. This result meant Edinburgh finish 2nd in their group setting up a quarterfinal against Nottingham University, a repeat of the Northern qualifying final.

Nottingham University was going to be Edinburgh’s toughest challenge with 2 senior England international players as well as a winning streak which has seen them win every game at Nationals and qualifiers for almost 3 years, being crowned BUCS champions twice in that time. Despite a valiant effort by Edinburgh, who kept working throughout the match, the game was lost 22-6 meaning Edinburgh were out of the running for a medal and competing for 5-8th position on the second day. Nottingham went on to finish 2nd in a very closely fought final against UEA.

The first game of the second day was against Lancaster and Edinburgh hit the ground running despite the aches and pains from the day before. The final score was a decisive 9-2 to Edinburgh with goals for 5 members of the squad, including a long range shot from Dominic Gillespie.

Edinburgh’s victory over Lancaster meant their final match of the competition was for 5 or 6th place and would be against Southampton, the winners of the southern qualifying tournament. Edinburgh wanted to finish on a high and went on with determined spirit. However, the game was slow to start from both sides with lots of shots by EUKC but goals just not sinking resulting in a 0-0 half time score. With Southampton 1-0 up after the break EUKC saw their second big injury of the tournament as Captain Ella Paul was carried off court with a sprained ankle. After this Edinburgh never quite recovered leading to a final score of 5-2 to Southampton and a 6th place finish for Edinburgh at this year’s BUCS championships.

firsts2

Captain Ella Paul said about the weekend “Despite some very crunchy opposition early on in the competition and a few hospitalising injuries, EUKC 1 finished a very respectable 6th placed team in the UK. Perhaps on another day we could have finished higher, however it was a brilliant squad effort and a fantastic weekend which was thoroughly awesome for everyone involved!”

EUKC would also like to take this opportunity to acknowledge all those leaving the club this year and to thank them for the good memories, the hard work and contributions to the club over the years. So thank you Dominic Gillespie, Sarah Kelly, Kathryn Maltby, Nitin Lalwani, Rosy Nolan, Poppy Simpson-Wells, Chris Kay, Will Ellis, Ffion Jones, Jen Merritt and Kyle Crombie.

First Team