BUCS finals: preview

By Maddy Sears

The finals of the BUCS competitions are set to take place this Tuesday and Wednesday and, with nine sides in action, it could be a highly successful week for those wearing palatinate.

Emma Werner Common

The men’s Waterpolo team are into the final four of the competition. They will face Bristol, Leeds and Manchester in a round robin over the two days. Bristol are undoubtedly favourites, having won every game so far this season, including a 7-4 win over Durham in the last round. However Durham will fancy their chances against both Leeds and Manchester having secured a draw (8-8) and a win (11-9) against the two sides earlier this season.

Men’s Waterpolo 2013-14

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

11

8

1

2

The men’s lacrosse face Leeds Metropolitan in their Championship final, and are overwhelming favourites to retain their title having already beaten their opponents 25-5 already this season. However, having conceded so many penalties in their semi-final win against Loughborough, the Palatinates will need to ensure they keep a full team on the pitch at all times to ensure that they win by that great a margin.

Men’s Lacrosse 2013-14

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

12

12

0

0

The women’s lacrosse will also go into their final as favourites, having been unbeaten all year in BUCS competition. The last time they came across their opponents Birmingham they won 15-6 and, having been highly clinical this season in all their matches, silverware will be expected.

Women’s Lacrosse 2013-14

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

12

12

0

0

The men’s tennis side will have a tough job on their hands to overcome Stirling in their Championship final. Stirling, who have won the Championship for the past two seasons, beat the Palatinates 10-2 in their first meeting of the year. Durham managed to return the favour when Stirling travelled to the north east, beating the reigning champions 8-4.  In their semi-final, however, Striling were on imperious form beating Bath, who had cruised through the Premier South division, 10-2. Durham themselves will carry momentum from their semi-final where they beat Oxford 12-0; they will start as underdogs but should be confident that an upset is very much on the cards.

Men’s Tennis 2013-14

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

12

11

0

1

The women’s Championship final is a far tougher one to call, however, with both Durham and Bath carrying similar records so far this season. Bath won a tight match against Loughborough in their semi-final, 8-4 while Durham were clinical against Exeter to win 12-0. Bath will present the biggest challenge of the season so far for the Palatinates, and it promises to be one of the more even Championship finals.

Women’s Tennis 2013-14

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

12

11

1

0

The men’s hockey side will face a familiar opponent in the form of Loughborough in their Championship final. The sides have already faced each other twice this season with the Palatinates winning 3-2 and 2-1. Both matches were very even affairs, though Durham will carry the psychological advantage knowing that on both occasions they found a way to win. Therefore Durham will start as narrow favourites, however who takes home the title will depend on which side brings their ‘A’ game on the day.

Men’s Hockey 2013-14

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

12

10

2

0

The women’s volleyball side are also very used to seeing final opponents Northumbria on the other side of the net. However, over the course of the season the improvement in the Durham side has been clear to see; in their first match against Northumbria they went down 3-0, but the next two meetings were far closer affairs with Northumbria edging it 3-2 and 2-1. Durham have been the only side to run Northumbria close so far this season, so despite starting as underdogs, there should be plenty of confidence in the team that they can get something out of the game.

Women’s Volleyball 2013-14

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

15

12

0

3

The women’s basketball side also face Northumbria who they have played twice this year. In their first meeting in November, Durham won convincingly 73-45 however in the return fixture Northumbria won a low scoring match 58-44. Northumbria, however, struggled in their semi-final and only just made it to the Championship match after squeezing past Loughborough 73-70. Durham, however, will carry more momentum going into the final having seen off Sheffield Hallam 84-71. Therefore this promises to be another final which could genuinely go either way, and could come down to who can hold their nerve in Surrey.

Women’s Basketball 2013-14

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

12

9

0

3

Finally, in their Trophy final on Wednesday, the women’s lacrosse 2nd team will take on Cambridge. The last two matches have shown that the Palatinates know how to win, coming through close ties against Leeds and St Andrews 11-9 and 7-6, respectively. Durham have not met their opponents yet this season, however Cambridge women’s lacrosse has always been strong with their 1st team claiming the Championship crown last year. Both sides have similar league records going into the tie; Cambridge have dropped points on two occasions, Durham have dropped points just once. Both sides have had to come through close semi-final ties so expect an even match, with a tense finish that could go either way.

Women’s Lacrosse 2nd 2013-14

Played

Won

Drawn

Lost

14

13

0

1

 

Palatinate will be reporting live from Surrey Sports Park on Wednesday with all the latest from the finals. Follow @palatSPORT for all live scores and results.

Photograph: Emma Werner

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