BUCS ’14 – South Midlands Preliminary

Saturday 22nd November will see the christening of BUCS korfball at Cambridge University’s new Sports Center. Yet it’s not only the sparkling floors and spacious changing rooms to look forward to, as the South Midlands region has some great korfball talent to showcase, old and new. Cambridge University 1st and 2nd teams will be facing Bedfordshire and newcomers de Montfort.

With only three members of the 1st team left in Cambridge, it was an uneasy start for the University this year, but acquiring some great basketball talent and a Dutchman, Cambridge have produced a fresh new team that have been smashing the local Cambridgeshire league. Captain Ollie Bell is back and better than ever, while Bart Kramer holds the other division, a native Dutch borrowed from SDO/Verzuimvitaal for the year.

Cambridge are looking forward to sharing some of their success next week with their second team, who are looking forward to their first BUCS tournament. Ed Holt’s squad of eager new korfball talent may still be getting to grips with the rules and tactics, but there’s no doubt they have buckets of energy and enthusiasm and some good shots on them!

The young, hungry, inspirational Bedfordshire Bulls are returning for their second ever korfball tournament, however, this year with the aim of BUCS gold. With limited training time and a lack of korfball knowledge, the Bulls are going to rely on their athleticism and basketball fundamentals to bring success. With a returning core of players who clinched a 5th place finish at Club Championships last year and expert coaching from Josh Rowe, the team have some great potential for next week. Leading the pack is captain and top scorer Stan Dunn off the back of his under21 Europeans who is hoping to lead the team to victory. The key acquisition of Helen Johnson will also add strength and experience to their already athletic squad of girls.

DMU Korfball are entering their inaugural BUCS competition as a brand new club officially affiliated with the DMU Student Union. With a few seasoned players but a mostly new squad it’s an exciting time for DMU korfball and an incredible opportunity to be part of a university tournament. Having already played a number of games in a local league the future is looking bright for the new DMU team with rapidly improving new players and teamwork. This is the first big step in the DMU teams inaugural season.

Regardless, the youthful nature of both competitor Universities is definitely causing some distress within the Cambridge team, who are finding it difficult to weigh up their opponents and fully analyse the competition. It’s also been rumoured that rival sibling of Bedfordshire’s coach, Isabel Rowe will be providing support and coaching for the Cambridge teams this Saturday, adding another level of competition to Saturday’s games.

All we can say for sure is that the South Midlands Prelims are shaping up to be one exciting and unpredictable day of University Korfball.