Things have been a bit quiet on the blog but we have been busy through the spring term. Here is a quick round up of competition activity
Hampshire Team Competition
The Hampshire Team League resumed in February after the Christmas break and it was nice to see a few more teams starting to make an appearance. In February we took second place behind Winchester Judo Club, while in March we were third behind Winchester and Holbrook.
As we have been supporting the competition from round 1 we have a solid lead overall going into the final round on April 7.
British Universities Championships
BUCS is our main target every year, and to make things interesting it moved a month earlier to the end of February making preparation a challenge with the exam period crammed in between BUCS and Christmas! And to make things more interesting our initial entry of seven players was reduced to 4 at the last minute by a variety of (mostly non judo related) injuries. So with some last minute panic over logistics sorted out, a depleted team left Southampton on Friday towards Sheffield with the weather forecast threatening snow. The journey was uneventful, weigh in was no problem, so after cramming hungry players with food we were all set for an early start on Saturday.
Stand out performances on the day were from Dan in the U66 Kyu grade category and Helen in U52 Kyu grades. Entry was large for most of the men’s categories and in Dan’s case 25 players meant 8 pools and a substantial knock out phase. Dan fought some nicely controlled contests throughout the day, winning his pool and all contests through to the semi final by ippon. Despite strong start in the semi final, a small error cost Dan the contest and he was left with the repechage final as his final contest of the day. Recovering from the loss of the semi final, and coping well with the aches and pains of a days judo, another calm and focussed performance led to a well deserved bronze medal.
After working hard to make the weight for U52, Helen was disappointed to be the only entrant. But that only seemed to fire her up for the combined U52/U57 category. She won both pool contests in short order with ippon throws and then made her way to the final with more attacking judo. Unfortunately the weight difference became apparent in the final and she was overpowered but had a worthy silver medal.
Will and Szymon had less luck in the Dan grade categories which as usual saw a strong entry. Will was unfortunately unable to overcome clearly experienced players in his U66 pool. Szymon had more luck at U81 coming second in his pool and moving into the knockout. Despite many strong attacks he was unable to break through the defences of his scottish opponent in the quarter final and with the scottish player losing at the semi final stage there was no repechage opportunity either.
Despite only have 3 battered players to call on we duly turned out for the team competition on Sunday with the chance of points for Will and Szymon being the main driver. Unfortunately the draw was not on our side with strong opposition from Oxford, Bath and Warwick in our pool meaning an early exit for the motorway.
A good weekend’s effort with 2 good medals to show for it. Lets hope we can avoid injury problems next year!
More BUCS photos here : http://www.flickr.com/photos/southamptonuniversityjudo/sets/72157632850025042/