February 17, 2018, by brzmjb1

BUCS Nationals | Saturday Review : Karate Bronze and Badminton duo book semi-final spots

Karate Bronze in the Men’s Kumite and Badminton semi-final spots for defending champion Li Liang Yang and Phone Pyae Naing capped out another brilliant day at BUCS Nationals 2018 for the Green and Gold.

Following a memorable Friday which saw University of Nottingham silver medal in the pool, the attention returned to the Ponds Forge on Saturday morning with a number of heats for UoN swimmers looing to book a place in the afternoon finals.

Polly Holden booked her place early on in the 200m Freestyle finals and when her competition reached its conclusion she finished 7th  place with a time of 2.04.92.  After a long wait overnight, she finally received her Silver medal from Friday’s 800m freestyle at the closing ceremony, much to the delight of the UoN Swim team and supporters who stayed to cheer her on.

Polly Holden receives her Silver Medal after recording a personal best in the 800m freestyle final

Meanwhile, there was a superb swim from Cira Fletcher (Psychology) who built on a strong performance in her heats to finish 5th in the final of the Women’s Open 50m breaststroke.

Also at Ponds Forge, there was a role reversal for Kayleigh Robinson (Physiotherapy and Sports Rehabilitation) who took to the pool to compete in the 100m Fly  having supported Green and gold athletes in her role as a physio at the Championships.

Jamie Croucher (Veterinary Medicine & Science) and Joe Miles (Chemical and Environmental Engineering) kicked off the athletics action over at the English Instute of Sport (EIS) in the High Jump, with both jumping well and just missing out on achieving their qualifying height.

Jamie Croucher and Joe Miles were in High Jump action at the English Institute of Sport

In Fencing – Men’s Sabre and Women’s Foil got underway at the Graves Tennis Centre, with Men’s Sabre first to qualify through to the Pool group. In the Women’s Foil both  Cara Chamber (Geography) and Serena Patel (Medicine) were pushed hard in the pool stages but made it through to the last 32 of the competition. That was unfortunately the end of the road for the UoN duo as Cara found herself on the wrong side of a 7:15 scoreline and Serena was defeated 12:15 in a close dual with Great Britain senior squad member Katie Smith.

Ebonnie Bridges (Mathematics) made a strong start in her first major Judo competition at 63kg by winning her two pool fights in convincing fashion. With a strong international field competition, Bridges made her statement at the Championship by winning one of her fights in just 20 seconds. The fairytale start to her maiden BUCS  National journey was sadly cut short with the officials penalising Bridges for a head dive, effectively ending her run in the competition. While disappointed to have not progressed further, Bridges, who has been selected for GB at European Cups in Spain and Germany was proud of her achievement and excited for the future.

She said “Its annoying because I’ve beaten her before. The atmosphere at a competition like this really makes the difference.  Being surround by so many talented people is really inspiring and I’m just disappointed I couldn’t have given them something to shout about today. I’ve been involved in Judo since I was 3 years old with my mum as my coach and her support has been amazing.  Im looking forward to getting better and hopefully coming back next year. The environment we work and train in at David Ross Sports Village is second to none and I hope I can bring some success to the University at future BUCS Championships.”

Also in Judo action at ICE Sheffield, Alan England (Cultures, Languages and Area Studies) got off to an emphatic start by dispatching his first opponent in under 10 seconds. He had to be at his best for his second bout and after weathering a barrage of attacks early on, managed to pin his opponent but unfortunately England was knocked out in the last 8 by Anglia Ruskin’s Adam Adaman.

The story of the day went to University of Nottingham Badminton players and the introduction of the seeds to the competition, with Li Liang Yang taking to court at EIS to defend her BUCS Gold – she didn’t disappoint. Her smooth path to the final was complete when she beat Kirby Ngan 21-19 and 21-17 to take one step closer to defending her 2017 BUCS Nationals title on Sunday.

Phone Pyae Naing booked his place in the Men’s Badminton singles semi-final on Sunday.

Dan Blair (Medicine) followed up his qualification yesterday by beating a seed to book a place in the last 16 against fellow University of Nottingham student Phone Pyae Naing (Business) which guaranteed a spot in the quarter finals for the Green and Gold.

Blair took an early 7-3 lead in the all Nottingham matchup but Phone rallied back to level things up at 14-14 before going on to win the first set 21-19 and finally winning the match 2-0.  Speaking after the defeat Blair said “I’m really happy with my progress at this Championships and in the game against Phone I performed well. I just about managed to keep going and I’m really happy about knocking a seed out in the final to get through. I’ll definitely be supporting Phone and hoping he can reach the final.”

Dan Blair in action last 16 action against fellow UoN student Phone Naing

Not to disappoint, Phone went on to beat Heinemen from Team Bath to book his place in the semi-final on Sunday.

In Karate, there was bronze medal success in the Men’s team Kumite. University of Nottingham lost out to eventual winners Bath in a close competition which involved a tough bronze medal match decided against  Exeter. With Bath overcoming Coventry in the gold medal match it simply left to Nottingham overcoming a resilient Exeter to secure BUCS National Bronze. The team will have to wait until Sunday to receive their medal and take their steps on the BUCS podium.

Tomorrow Schedule:

Sunday is usually finals day at BUCS Nationals and tomorrow is no exception.  Li Lian Yang  and Phone Pyae Naing will be hoping to be victorious in the Women’s and Men’s Badminton singles semi-finals and guarantee a BUCS medal for Univeristy of Nottingham.

Paralympian Tim Jeffery will take aim in Stavely for the short range shooting hoping to create a stir with his first performance at BUCS Nationals.

There’s fencing action at the Graves Tennis Centre, with Uon Scholar  Alexander Jones shaping up in the Men’s Foil as well as Laura Albinin facing off in the Women’s Epee from the Graves Tennis Centre.

You can follow the University of Nottingham’s progress in the BUCS Nationals on our TwitterFacebook and also here. There will also be regular updates on the BUCS official website and social media channels.

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