Swimming Varsity – Match Report

3rd March 2011

University of Nottingham managed to get their first point for the 2011 Varsity series, as they were convincing winners against Trent, with the final score Uni 379 – 225 Trent.

Historically the event has favoured University of Nottingham, possessing some of the leading British talent in the event both national and across Europe. Competitors such as the Olympic finalist Jess Sylvester and team captain Katie Ambridge are examples of the strength in depth Nottingham has, with both swimmers competing in the European championship qualifiers only a week away.

Uni went off to a flying start, with both the men’s and women winning the 100 Individual medley and respectively coming third place too. This would be the common theme of the afternoon, with Trent unable to win a single race outright. The podiums of each race where dominated by Uni, especially the Men’s 100m breaststroke, women’s 50m butterfly and freestyle.

However, the highlight of the day for Trent was in the 100m backstroke where uni’s Matt smith tied with Diggins from Trent in the most exciting encounter of the afternoon. This event highlighted the improvement of Trends swimming team from previous years and should act as an encouragement for the future. Nonetheless, the Uni domination was still clear to all, as Uni swept the other events.

The times notched up by the winners were impressive and showed the gap between the two Uni’s in this sport. In the 4x50m freestyle relay, the Women’s team timed 1 minute and 56.11 seconds whilst Trent’s quickest time was 2minutes and 04.99 seconds. However the Men’s was much closer, with there being only a 2 second difference between Uni’s and Trent’s top competitors.

The final event was the much anticipated Skins Medley; a series of races compromising of 5 strokes. The competitor finishing last becomes eliminated until there is only one swimmer left. After becoming familiar with the rules and regulations, the crowd seemed to enjoy this unique event which debuted in the swimming varsity. However, Trent was unable to have a good showing, finishing 6th, 5th, and 4th respectively in both the Men and Females event. Female team captain Katie Ambridge won the event, also winning every race she competed in whilst Matt Smith was victorious for the Men’s.

Albeit less events than previous years, this year’s swimming varsity still lived up to the excitement and its predictability. Both sets of supporters enjoyed the contests in what has always been an enthralling competition. For Trent, they still lead the Varsity and with other events which they can excel on still awaiting, confidence is still high. For Uni, the swimming event has given them a boost for their Varsity hopes. With this being the last event in the calendar season for most swimmers, it was a great way to bow out and for Uni in particular, in style.

David Akosim