By Ollie Godden
The annual Collingwood vs Grey battle took place later than usual this year but was still full of fantastic talent and unpredictable excitement. In the only Durham college varsity counting for Premiership league points, the two sides competed across nine sports, meaning either college had to claim five wins to walk away with the varsity title held by Grey from last year.
Things started well for Collingwood, claiming a table tennis victory, but Grey’s impressive ultimate frisbee side levelled the scores as they edged an 11-10 win.
Two matches which were impossible to predict pre-game were lacrosse and men’s squash. Collingwood managed to claim two victories, both by one point margins. This meant Collingwood were able to take the varsity crown before the evening session had begun, as their women’s squash took a 4-1 win while the biggest result of the day came from the 27-3 mauling on the netball court.
Three huge games were still to be played in the context of league points, however, and Grey women did well to come away with a 2-1 win in the hockey, Collingwood’s first loss. The men’s rugby contest was also a tight affair until the last 10 minutes, a 33-3 scoreline flattering the league favourites.
A final clash between two quality Premiership football sides rounded off the day, and it looked as if Grey would have the last laugh as they snuck in two early goals. However, a spirited fightback was capped off by a Callum Elson levelling header just seconds before the end of play.
A final varsity score of 6.5-2.5 will please the Team Collingwood faithful, but it does not do justice to the competitiveness throughout the day, and all involved should be hailed for an outstanding effort.
Photograph: Grant Slater