Category Archives: Sport

Novice Cup

This weekend brought Durham’s annual Novice Cup, in which all college novices compete for the winning title. On the first day, crews have a time trial of 800m on the racecourse with a 360 degree spin in the middle. On the second day, depending on their time, crews are pitched against another in a head race. The weekend saw over 40 crews race with one another. It was a weekend full of splashes, crabs, some broken boats, but, mostly, team spirit. It is events like these which truly reflect the teamwork and effort contributed by not only crew members, but also coaches, the Boat Club exec, and beyond. It’s an opportunity for Chad’s ethos to be represented, it shows all members of the Boat Club, regardless of experience, pulling together to ensure a rewarding weekend was had by all.

Chad’s was lucky enough to have three excellent times, with the novice men’s crew finishing 4th, and the women’s crews finishing 15th and 34th respectively. It’s been a great weekend for St Chad’s College and our Boat Club. It’s fantastic that the novices get the chance to participate in this event so early into the academic year; and so early into their rowing careers! What’s also so rewarding about the weekend is seeing how far last year’s novices have progressed: now senior crews are focusing on WeHORR and HORR, both 8 kilometre head races in March which will take us down to the Thames. Who knows where the novices will be this time next year; a huge well done to all involved.

Success in Sport

Although traditionally, Chad’s has been regarded as easy opponents, this term has seen countless examples of Chadsians excelling in sport.

The Chad’s-John’s women’s Rugby team – led by Chadsians Chloe Hellier and Tash Garrood – who have been storming through their league, were specially chosen to represent the University at the College Varsity with York University. Needless to say, they smashed it, winning 20-0.

Evie Griffith’s valiant Women’s Badminton team only narrowly missed out on promotion to goal difference. Whilst the Men’s pool team have been grafting their way through to the top of the Premiership with win after win, the table tennis team had a seven-match unbeaten streak taking them to the top. The Mixed Ultimate Frisbee team, last year’s Team of the Season – led in style by Ollie Green – have earned themselves a very well-deserved promotion to the Premiership.

The Mixed Lacrosse Team have had an unbelievable season. Captain Phoebe Lundy has led the A team to both an unbeaten season in the league, earning promotion to the Premiership, but also success in the university-wide cup! No one knows when a Chad’s team last won a cup, so this is an extraordinary achievement!

These team successes have only been reflected at a University level. Last Wednesday saw the big national BUCS final. Several Chadsians were integral to their team’s success. Amelia Harper, Bryony Whitehead, Victoria Lewis (all in the Women’s Water Polo Team) and Emily Sambrook-Smith (Women’s Lax 1s), Phoebe Davies (Women’s Lax 2s), Paul Lefebvre (Men’s Lax 1s) are all now BUCS National Champions!  These stories are simply phenomenal and we are lucky to have such talented people in Chad’s!

Sports Update…


Now that we’re halfway through Epiphany term many of our college sports teams are coming to the end of their league matches and moving on to the knockout-style tournaments, so it’s the perfect chance to have a look at how the leagues have gone for us so far. Plus a short report on recent rowing achievements.



This weekend (18-19th February) was Tyne head of the river, the biggest head race of the term; a fantastic opportunity for our senior women’s squad to get some experience on their first 5k race.

It was a brilliant race, fighting the current of the tide and some strong head-winds but the crew managed to beat Hatfield to come top college crew of their division. It’s a shame more Colleges didn’t enter however it was a great experience for the girls, and a great build up for next term where we want to try de-novice the crew.


Men’s Basketball

Div 1:  3 wins, 1 loss.  Current placing: 2nd


Round 1 vs Trevs: 34 -32

Round 2 vs Collingwood: 27-53


Women’s Basketball (Combined Chad’s John’s Team)

Div 2: 1 win 2 losses.   Current placing: 3rd


Round 1 vs Grey A: 16-47

Men’s Football

A Team

Div 1: 3 wins, 3 draws, 5 losses.   Current placing: 9th

Floodlit cup:

Round 1 vs Castle A: 1-5


Round 1 vs Castle A: 0-1


B Team

Div 5: 4 wins, 3 draws, 2 losses.   Current placing: 7th


Women’s Football

Div 1: 3 wins, 1 draw, 3 losses.   Current placing: 3rd

Floodlit cup:

Round 1 vs Ustinov A: 1-12


Round 1 vs St Aidan’s A: 0-3


Men’s Hockey

Premiership: 2 win, 3 draws, 7 losses.   Current placing: 7th


Round 1 vs St Aidan’s A: 3-2

Round 2 vs Hild Bede A: 1-4


Women’s Hockey

Div 1: 3 wins, 2 draws, 6 losses.    Current placing: Joint 4th


Round 1 vs  John Snow A: 0-3


Mixed Lacrosse

A Team

Div 1: 6 wins, 1 draw.    Current placing: 1st (Will be promoted to the Premiership next season)


Round 1 vs Stephenson A: 12-2

Round 2 vs Grey A: 8-3

Quarter finals vs St Cuthbert’s A: 11-3

Semi-finals TO PLAY


B Team

Div 2: 4 wins, 2 draws, 2 losses.   Current placing: 1st (Should be promoted to Division 1 next season)


Round 1 vs Grey B: 7-2

Round 2 vs University B: 0-6



Div 1: 8 wins, 1 draw, 2 losses.   Current placing: 2nd



Div 2: 4 wins, 6 losses.    Current placing: 8th


Men’s Rugby (Chad’s John’s combined team)

Div 1: 3 wins, 4 losses.    Current placing: 5th


Women’s Rugby (Chad’s John’s combined team)

Premiership: 3 wins, 3 losses.    Current placing: 3rd


Round 1 vs “combined Milbut”: 0-39

Combined Chad’s John’s Women’s Rugby represented Durham at the College Varisty games against York on Saturday 25th February in a tag rugby game; they won 4-0.


Men’s Squash

Premiership: 4 wins, 4 losses.   Current placing: 7th


Round 1 vs John’s B: 5-0


Women’s Squash (Chad’s John’s combined team)

Premiership: 7 wins, 3 losses.    Current placing: 2nd


Round 1 vs Hatfield-Castle: 4-1


Table Tennis

Premiership: 7 wins, 3 losses.   Current placing: Joint 3rd


Men’s Badminton

Div 1: 5 wins, 3 losses.    Current placing: 4th


Women’s Badminton

Div 1: 5 wins, 2 losses.   Current placing: 2nd


Mixed Badminton

Div 1: 3 wins, 3 losses.   Current Placing: 4th


Chad’s-John’s Day 2016

Chad’s-John’s Day was a further proof, after a historic victory last year, how much our sporting prowess, dedication and spirit outranks that of John’s.

The day started out a bit unsteady, with losses in Chess, Rounders, Frisbee and Hockey, but Chad’s soon began to pick up the pace by smashing them across the board in basketball and football, with other key wins in Table Tennis, Netball, Croquet, Volleyball and Athletics, helping us secure a lead.

There was a great turnout of supporters at Mixed Lacrosse, which no doubt helped the team power to victory.

Bean Sampson, Alex Lavelle and Emily Sambrook-Smith then went straight off the rubber crumb and onto the track to beat all three John’s girls at both the 100 and the 4 x 100. The 4 x 100 boys also won by a large margin without having ever raced together before.

At the very end of the day it was still tight, but the Pool team pulled through and got us our last big win to ensure that John’s couldn’t use their Summer Ball the day before as an excuse for losing substantially, 9-13 to Chads with 3 draws.

Special mentions must go to Will Wright and Alex Lavelle, whose consistent dedication to Chad’s sport led to their being awarded Sportsman and Sportswoman of the day. Well done everyone!

chads hjohnschads johns trophy



Charity Dodgeball Match


In the midst of abundant sporting events over Easter Term, the 9th of June saw what some may consider the most vicious tournament of them all: the annual Charity Dodgeball Match, as traditionally organised by the Charities Committee.


In the lead up to the match, the film ‘Dodgeball’ was screened by the MCR in the Chapel, with Vince Vaughn and Ben Stiller laying down the rules of the game. On the day of the anticipated competition, the five D’s of dodgeball clearly manifested upon the courts – plenty of semi-successful Dodging, Ducking, Dipping, Diving and Dodging could be sighted.


IMG_8190 IMG_8197

Seven teams were pitted against each other. Amongst the flurry of balls flung in nearly every possible direction, Adam Howes notably displayed strength and frighteningly mathematical precision. Cormac Frazer did not lack in intensity nor competitive zeal. Alex Blakoe recovered from a particularly unfortunate blow with impressive swiftness. As one of the last ones standing, Tamara Bud braved through the barrage of balls that were catapulted at her.


All in all, the afternoon was great fun, and a charitable success. Congratulations to Team Gibbs for securing first place during the finals! Here are some of the teams who competed…

Team Fairbairn
Team Fairbairn
Team Hulm
Team Hulm
Team Bud
Team Bud
Team Gibbs
Team Gibbs

Success at York Spring Regatta

Over the May bank holiday weekend our men’s first crew were busy taking York Spring Regatta by storm. The occasion marked the maiden voyage of our new four, Anna Roots, donated in memory of the late Chadsian who went on to row at the Commonwealth Games.


Racing started with a dramatic first round against John Snow College Boat Club, ending in their sudden disqualification after they veered across the river forcing our crew to perform an emergency stop.


The second round was facing St Mary’s College Boat Club where our crew cruised to an easy victory, ahead too many lengths to count, placing the Chad’s crew into the final against Grey College Boat Club.


Having had a flawless day thus far, GCBC were going to be tough opposition. The Chad’s boat had a great start and settled into an early rhythm to slowly pull away from the Grey crew, sitting comfortably three-quarters of a length ahead for the first 800 metres. However upon reaching the final bridge GCBC began pulling back, prompting a sprint for the finish. Neither of the crews could tell who had won upon crossing the finish line, but Chads were elated after it was announced they won by just over a foot.

Congratulations to (left to right) Jake Greenwood, James Channer, Lorna Howie (cox), Nick Crook, Alastair Breeze.

13170098_10154142745119747_681531113_oThe crew finally won some well-deserved points along with tankards to drink their victory from, all in the maiden regatta for our new boat.

After such an amazing start to the SCCBC regatta season and a strong freshers squad this year, the club is ready for what we are hoping will be one of our strongest years yet.

We look forward to seeing Anna cruise to many more victories in the coming years.

Photo Credits: SI Events Photography –


Anna Roots Boat Launch

The end of Epiphany term brought a morning of both celebration and reflection for college, and in particular, the boat club. On the final Friday, amid dissertation deadlines, lectures, and trains home, members of all three common rooms gathered at the riverbank outside the boathouse to launch the new boat kindly donated by the family of a Chad’s alumna.

040Anna Roots (née Townsend) had started her sparkling rowing career at St Chad’s in 1998 whilst studying geography, going on to win gold at the Commonwealth Rowing Championships in Canada, but was tragically killed during a charity cycling trip from John O’Groats to Lands’ End for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research.

032038In her memory, Anna’s family donated a new IV to the boat club, and travelled to Durham to take part in its blessing, naming, and launch. Dr Masson spoke of the impact news of Anna’s passing had had on her predecessor, Dr Cassidy, followed by one of Anna’s friends who described their time at Chad’s and how much they had both loved it.

086Current students present were pleased to confirm that the sense of community and enthusiasm are still just as strong. The boat was then blessed by the Chaplain, and named by Anna’s husband, Ian Roots, with the traditional bottle of champagne poured over the bow where lettering spells out her name. A mixed crew from the boat club proceeded to take ‘Anna’ for her maiden voyage to applause from the audience on the bank.

054Over lunch and coffee, tales of college life from then and now were shared, ending with a tour for the friends who were eager to see if the bar was just as they remembered it. Anna’s friends and family heard about the boat club’s hopes for the future, strengthened by the beautiful new IV which will help the booming numbers make waves this regatta season, and hopefully for many, many more to come.

St Chad’s Men’s Hockey – “The Great Escape”

St. Chad’s College Men’s Hockey Team 2015/16
On Wednesday afternoon, St. Chad’s College Men’s Hockey team officially finished their season.  After the glory of promotion last year, it would be fair to say we were looking for a modest season.  Certainly, most opposition teams could not take us seriously in our fashionably flair kit; we were true underdogs.

Former Captain, Adam Baker

We started the season strong with a win against Castle and a hard fought draw against John’s.  However, with numerous injuries across the season, including the loss of our previous captain, Adam Baker, to injury, we struggled in the big fixtures.  By Christmas we sat at the bottom of the league.

Yet, what Chad’s lacks in size, we make up for in spirit and determination.  Coming into the New Year, we dug deep and with a few key players returning, like Adam (despite still being injured and awaiting surgery in March) and George Cook, our goalie, we managed possibly the greatest escape of a college hockey team in recent years.  Strong wins against Grey, Mildert and Trevs saw us rise up the table into fourth.

Ready for the final

Henry Hoult, commanding the defence, was the most consistent player in the team and simply instrumental to our season.  Captain Will Wright’s speed down the wing was matched by Harry Light’s “I score when I want” philosophy to bring up the teams’ goal tally.  Freshers Noah Lipschitz, Andrew Laurie, Freddie Rollason and Freddie Cooney made their mark on the team, with Noah emerging as joint top scorer of the season.

Henry Hoult dominating the game
Henry Hoult dominating the game

Having finished such a tough season, we have all improved immensely.  James Pointon – in his outrageous socks, Ally ‘the Hurricane’ Breeze, Harriet “my stick slipped out of my hand” Newhouse, Ed Boughton and Will Hewitt deserve particular mention for their efforts.  Issy Davies was an invaluable addition to the squad; we are very grateful for bringing some DU class to the team.  Special thanks as well to Ben Hewitt and Callum Wordsworth for stepping in as goalie when we needed them most.

Will Hewitt attempting to provide the match changing pass

It has been a long and hard fought season, but a successful one.  Naturally, comparisons to Leicester City’s survival have been thrown about, but we shy away from such praise.  St. Chad’s Mens’ Hockey has proudly held the Festival of Sport title for three years running (even though we are the smallest college in the university).  With the possibility of Peter Ellis playing for us next year, we are hopeful that we shall match this performance and take the league next year.

Jack Angers