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Why You Should Join a Sports Team at University

Student Ambassador Molly explains how being part of a sports team is a great way to meet new people, learn new skills and have fun.

How did you come across the Rounders & Softball team?

When I first started university in 2020, I met a lot of people through subject-based group chats. With this, I made friends with a guy named Tobias who was part of the Rounders & Softball team, who introduced me to the sport, as I had no clue the University had a team. I decided to join and stayed until my final year of university.

What did you get up to whilst being part of the team?

By being part of the team, I was able to develop my skills in both sports through weekly training sessions, and non-competitive and competitive matches against other universities. In my first year of being part of the team we visited Liverpool University where we played a rounders match, and had some great fun, well apart from the large amount of rainfall that joined in. The team also took on BUCS Softball matches, which is the competitive matches against other universities. As well as that we took part in varsity, which is the main sporting event of the year, where every sports team plays against Salford University’s teams, however, last year Chester did not win.

Nevertheless, my second year of being part of the team is when things got a lot more exciting. Our Charity Officer planned many matches against other universities and sports teams. We attended two Rounders England Tournaments with one at Derby at the beginning of the year and the other at Leicester at the end of the year. And whilst attending the Leicester one we received fourth place out of six teams, which was a huge achievement as the match was after Easter break and we hadn’t had much training together in this team.

Although just before this match, both our teams (Softball and Rounders) attended the biggest sporting event of the year Varsity!

This year the event took place at Salford University, and everyone played to their best ability. We had trained hard, found positions that we were best in and… we had won! Won both of our matches, which added to the scoreboard and led to an overall win for Chester!

What about the social side of things?

However, being part of a team isn’t all about the matches and training, to work well as a team you need to take a break sometimes, which is why the team has a Social Secretary to plan fun activities. Each week on a Wednesday is every sports’ social night out, every team picks a theme which could be Abba, Dress as your Degree, or Red Flag etc. All of which can be done sober or non-sober. Plus, activities can be Sober Socials, such as Bowling, visiting the Zoo, a picnic, or Lazer Tag. And from experience, all can be great fun, although Lazer Tag is difficult, as I somehow ended up in the minus points.

But how do you celebrate all these achievements?

After Varsity near the end of the academic year (for most) there is the Athletics Union (AU) Awards Dinner, which is hosted at Chester Racecourse with the dress code of black tie.

The dinner celebrates each sports teams' accomplishments and certain awards are given out, such as Club Colours which I achieved for having a high attendance at training sessions whilst being in the final year. There is also the Committee Member of the Year award, which this year was awarded to every person who was nominated, including my Team Captain.

Plus, outside of the AU Awards, we had Club Awards which is where each team member nominated someone for any of the categories with a reason why. For example, the Life of the Party award or the Underdog of the Year award. By doing this we can celebrate all of our achievements more personally than the AU Awards.

From this, I believe being part of a sports team is one of the best things you can do as part of your university journey, you learn new skills, make new friends and have a great time with great memories whilst doing so.

Find out more about the sports teams at the University of Chester.

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