Hundreds of competitors from across the North of England came together for a family of schools’ annual sporting spectacle.
This year it was the turn of Trinity Academy, in Thorne, near Doncaster to welcome students from the Emmanuel Schools Foundation for its annual ‘Olympics’-style day of competition.
The event saw girls and boys competing in a series of netball, rugby, football, volleyball and hockey matches, as well as cross country and triathlon.
Each school – The King’s Academy, Middlesbrough, Bede Academy, Blyth, Trinity Academy, and Emmanuel College, Gateshead – fielded their best players with virtually all year groups represented.
It was a successful trip south for the travelling schools with Emmanuel College taking the honours in girls’ cross country, triathlon, rugby and football to win the overall title.
The King’s Academy girls put in winning performances in hockey and netball, while the boys played their part by triumphing in the cross country.
Bede Academy won the volleyball, with consistency in other sports taking them to second place overall.
All the games except volleyball were played outside on the all-weather pitch, the multi use games area and football pitches, while neighbouring Thornensians RUFC loaned their ground for the rugby.
Henry Gowland, a vice principal from The King’s Academy, said: “This is a great opportunity for us to watch the players from all four schools and spot any that are showing potential for our touring ESF Lions rugby squad, which we’ll be selecting later in the year.”
Emmanuel College volleyball player Daniel Lambert, 18, said: “I took part in the ESF ‘Olympics’ when I was younger and it gets quite competitive in the lower years. Only the sixth formers play volleyball and we don’t take it too seriously, especially since this is the first time we’ve played as a team so we’re not that good.”
Bede Academy had travelled the furthest and head of girls’ sport Laura Street said it was a good opportunity for her hockey girls to play different teams.
“We play Emmanuel College because they’re near to us but we don’t often get to meet Trinity Academy. We’re all very loyal to our own schools but all the competition is played in friendly spirit,” she added.
Trinity Academy netball player Niamh Russell, 12, said: “It’s been really good but we were beaten 8-0 by Emmanuel College in our first game. They’re really tall!”
After the matches the schools gathered in the main hall at Trinity Academy for a presentation and the handing over of the ‘Olympic baton’ to next year’s host, Bede Academy.