Fierce Lancaster performance not enough to hold onto Roses

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Lancaster University were unsuccessful in their attempt to hold on to the Carter-James Roses trophy losing out to rivals York who reclaimed the title as Roses champion in this year’s tournament.

The annual intervarsity sporting competition, which was held at York University, witnessed Lancaster lose the Roses’ crown by 72 points with the final score ending 176.5 points to York and 104.5 points to Lancaster. The Roses sporting tradition is in its 47th year wherein Lancaster has celebrated 22 victories.

During the competition, Lancaster put up a fierce battle and was able to hold on to the lead until the third day of the competition.  It was on Saturday, however, that the tournament began to escape the Red Rose. Despite this defeat for Lancaster, the tournament was taken to the final day illustrating the away side’s determination and the sporting ability which is housed and honed at Lancaster University.

The opening ceremony, which was funded by Roses sponsor, Ernst and Young, was hosted at the Huntington Stadium and was watched by a crowd of 2,500 people. The evening’s festivities were kicked off with a performance from York’s cheerleading squad followed by two musical numbers from members of both York and Lancaster’s brass bands. Crowds then watched on as the Lancaster and York Rugby teams battled it out on the field. Unfortunately for Lancaster, York were victorious but this did not deflate the Lancaster crowd with the now infamous “Lancaster la la la” chant echoing around the stadium long after the game had ended.

This year, the tournament kept things simple by purely shinning the spotlight on the sporting talents of the two rival universities. Marc Handley, LUSU Vice President (Sports), commented: “Roses this year got back to the main reason behind the event, Sport. There were no extras around which needlessly deflects the attention from the fantastic sporting prowess on display and that is precisely how Roses should be.”

The sporting event was brought to a close with a ceremony which commemorated the many successful achievements of the last four days by presenting an array of awards to the sporting champions from each University. It also included a performance from York’s Dance Society which combined a selection of different dance disciplines from classical ballet to street dance. York’s Capoeira Club put on a usual yet remarkable show which blended martial art, break dancing and Brazilian instruments into one performance.

Handley, who has secured another year in the new position of Vice President (Activities), will be the driving force behind next year’s Roses which will be hosted on home ground. When questioned on his plans for next year Handley said: “It is clear that what we have to do is show off the fantastic sports centre we will have for the weekend. The facility will be able to have so much more going on in it at the same time that there will be such a fantastic buzz to it”. Handley went on the say: “I would like to thank every single person involved in this year’s Roses, they are the ones who make the Red Army, and it was an honour to lead them this weekend”.

Robbie Pickles, LUSU President, was full of praise for the high level of student involvement which Roses attracted this year. “The Roses tournament is an absolutely fantastic tradition and it is brilliant to see so many teams put the effort in to help us win. It is a shame that we lost this year but it will only strengthen our resolve to fight even harder next year”.

Matt Power travelled the two and half hours from York to Lancaster to show his support for the University. “Roses is a fantastic competition that epitomises the fighting spirit of our hard-working sport teams. Home advantage is everything in Roses and York proved this once again this year, with a convincing victory. But we’ll be back next year, bigger and better”.

Catherine Mclearie, who has taken part in Roses for the past three years, said: “Each year I have enjoyed Roses more and more. Other universities don’t have anything quite like the Roses tournament and it is one of the reasons I decided to come to Lancaster”.

The tournament allowed over 2,000 students to showcase their sporting talents in 40 different sports in one of the biggest intervarsity competitions in Europe. The competition also created a platform for numerous opportunities for students to sample the media industry with Lancaster’s very own media outlets such as SCAN, and Bailrigg.

Rebecca Pocklington was part of SCAN’s Roses media team. “Roses was a great opportunity to take part in sports reporting and experience what a day in the life of a journalist is like. It was also great to be there to show my support for Lancaster as well”.

For now the Carter James trophy is in the hands of York University but next year, it will be Lancaster’s turn to host the sporting event and pursue victory once again for the Red Rose.

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