What students decide to do on their Wednesday afternoons off at university completely varies. With lectures finishing at 1pm, students can do as they please for the remainder of the day. Whether it is catching up on work, social lives, or most likely sleep, it is certain that the free time is valued by many.
However, for some, Wednesday afternoons are saved for sport, as they were designed for in the first place. Manchester offers tonnes of opportunities for talented students to showcase their skills at the top level and to represent the Uni while doing so.
Both men’s and women’s teams from a number of sports are performing extremely well, notably the women’s badminton 1st team. Unbeaten in their first 5 league games, they look certain to mount a title challenge in their division 2A. Next up in the league they face Lancaster.
Also in a rich vein of form are the women’s basketball 1st team. seven wins out of seven means they sit six points clear at the top of the Northern 2B table. However, with a tricky away trip to Hull showing just how tough their division is, this season is far from a done deal.
Basketball and badminton are not the only successes for the University’s female teams. With the men’s basketball 1st team sitting comfortably in 3rd with games in hand on those above, the Northern 1A title is up for grabs.
Also in division 1A are the men’s badminton 1st side. In a tight table they sit just below the two sides from Sheffield and one from Leeds. A crunch match on the 13th of February against Leeds could be pivotal in both side’s seasons.
Perhaps the best part of sport at university is that the options are endless and the opportunities to play any sport, well-known or not, are vast. The fact that there are four men’s squash teams, six volleyball teams in total, and six women’s netball sides proves the extent to which university sport has grown.
A perfect example of the strength and depth of the University’s sport is the women’s netball set-up. With the University being represented in the Northern Premier all the way to the Northern 7A division, clearly the interest and skill in women’s netball is abundant.
Both the squash and table tennis clubs are also performing brilliantly so far this season, contributing heavily to Manchester’s overall BUCS points position. However, the lacrosse, volleyball, and water polo clubs are leading the way in gaining points for the University of Manchester.
Both hockey and football are the most popular sports for many students. Boasting seven football teams and ten hockey sides it is evident that these traditional favourites are holding strong in Manchester.
Overall, the university has entered a staggering 78 teams into the BUCS league programme for 2018/19. Securing a total of 282 wins throughout the season, at a win ratio of 47%, the volume and quality of university sport in Manchester is truly impressive.
The results of this season leave us in 16th place in the overall BUCS league table, while Manchester Metropolitan University sit down in 34th. Unsurprisingly, the table is topped by the University of Nottingham, followed closely by Loughborough University.