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WSIHE #TakeAStand

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There were mixed fortunes for WSIHE teams in ‘Take A Stand’ week.


#TakeAStand is a campaign organized by British Universities and Colleges Sport that aims to make the university sport experience as inclusive and accessible as possible.  This week saw nearly 400 students from over 25 different sports clubs sign the Sports Charter against LGBTQ+ Discrimination in sport. Many teams posted photos showing their support before their matches and the SU Bar was a spectrum of bright colours in the evening to culminate the days celebrations. 



SU President Lauren Ellis said, “Take A Stand is all about standing against discrimination in sport whether that’s homophobia or racism for instance. This week we’ve got our sports charter which students are coming in to sign so they can say they agree that these discriminations shouldn’t be in sport at our university.


“As soon as they sign the charter they get given a rainbow lace to use in their sport fixtures this week and for the rest of the season if they wish, just to show their support for the Take A Stand campaign as individuals and as a team as well.


“Other universities get involved with it and will do different things but we do quite a lot here. Our aim is to make sport inclusive to all our students.



“In a couple of weeks we will be raising awareness about discrimination against disability in sport and encouraging all of our sport students and sports clubs to be inclusive to disabled students.” 

Daisy Smale, Sports Federation President commented that "We are proud to have so many students supporting the inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community."

"The Sports Charter forms part of the #TakeAStand Campaign and thus coincided with the launch of our new #TakeAStand accreditation scheme.  This scheme enables clubs to earn a bronze, silver or gold accreditation but completing a series of inclusion focused activities. Following, the fantastic turn out yester, many are already well to their way to Bronze."


Men’s volleyball ones dropped the first set at home to Portsmouth. They also trailed the visitors for most of the second set before getting back into it at 22-22. Portsmouth had a set point at 25-26 but WSIHE won the next three points to level things up at one set all. The home side then edged ahead before taking the fourth set comfortably 25-13.



Afterwards vice-captain Rhys Ryan-Heaney said, “We didn’t start how we wanted. The first two sets we played quite poorly but still managed to get back into the game. It was really good for us to come back in the second set from 23-20 down. That helped seal the game for us. And then we played the volleyball we wanted to play the last two sets.


“We had some very good performances today, particularly from our captain Harry, who was hitting very well. Mark Robins was also pushing the ball into good areas. Everyone played brilliantly today to be honest and it’s always nice to get one over on Portsmouth.”


The women volleyballers lost away at Portsmouth 3-1.


In football, men’s sixes went into the match against Surrey top of South Eastern 6A but dropped their first league points of the season. WSIHE started well and should have gone one up as early as the third minute when Kieran Dowell found himself in space but couldn’t direct his header on target.


The hosts did take the lead however four minutes later thanks to Jonny Linard’s crisp finish into the right hand corner.



Jason Riley had a couple of good chances and Ciar Cox sent a free kick over the bar on 32 minutes.


Surrey put pressure on the home side in the second half going close six minutes in before equalizing in the 52nd minute with a header from a corner.


The visitors forged other opportunities that came to nothing and Linard might have nicked it with ten minutes to go with a set-piece that was just over.


Elsewhere in football, the men’s twos beat Roehampton 2-0 in a clash between the bottom two sides, the fours were 1-0 winners at home to Imperial College and women’s twos thumped Roehampton’s first team 6-1.


In badminton the men’s second team took on Kingston twos. Captain Josh Spence said beforehand, “We played them last year and it was a close game but we’ve lost a few third years. We’ve got five freshers playing today. Hopefully they do well. We’ve played ok but unfortunately the results are just going against us. They’ve all been close. We’re playing a lot of new teams coming into our league that are first teams with good players. But we’ll stick at it and hopefully get a win today.” 



Spence’s side picked up a much needed 5-3 win. Men’s badminton ones drew 4-4 away at Surrey and are now a couple of points behind second place Brunel.

Men’s table tennis are still going well and booked a quarter final Trophy place with a win over Sussex. They will face either Bristol or Bournemouth in the last eight.   

It was a tough week for the hockey teams. The men’s and women’s ones both lost to Brighton, the men’s side losing by the odd goal in eleven. Surrey dished out heavy defeats to the men’s and women’s twos.



In netball, the threes are top of South Eastern 4A after a 45-35 win over Sussex twos. The fives are also top in their league and beat Roehampton threes this week.  There were defeats though for the ones against King’s College London and the twos who took on a very strong St Mary’s side in the dome.   

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