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Game Day in Edinburgh

Oscar Gonzalez Sola Student Life

Last Wednesday 29th of November, me and my colleagues from the volleyball team had scheduled a game away up in the old and beautiful city of Edinburgh. It was the third round of the BUCS league, the competition where the best universities of the country play for the honour of becoming British Champions, and the chance to get a ticket for competing in the European Universities Championship in summer.

Usually, when travelling for a game, there is no much time to visit or have a look around, it is more like get in the bus, 3-4 hours trip, arriving at the venue, playing the game and back. And this time, did not seem to be different at all: leaving Newcastle at 10am, 2 hours trip to Edinburgh and playing around 2pm. We often drive ourselves on these trips, and considering English weather, we were very lucky when on Wednesday the sky was open and clear, perfect conditions for a smooth and easy drive.

I have heard before about the beauty of this land, its small villages and countryside, but it was that day when I first saw it. The road up and down all the time, forests, lakes, trees, old towns,, crossing Northumberland National Park going up a mountain to pass the Scottish border, made the drive so enjoyable and fun that the 2 hours trip flew away immediately and we arrived in Edinburgh around 12pm, a bit earlier than expected.

Once you get to the gym, it’s time to find the locker room, eat some fruits or snack before the warm up and get ready to start. Some people have a lot of habits and rituals when changing, like taking a shower before playing, using a couple of pair of socks or wearing a thermal shirt, but for me it is quite casual, nothing especial. But what I like to do always before a game is stop thinking about anything else but the sport, nothing from outside, just the ball and your teammates. It is sometimes very hard to do, but most likely it comes natural and it’s just fun time.

The game was a bit easier than thought. The University of Edinburgh was missing two good players and the result was a 0-3 for Team Northumbria, with scores 12-25, 9-25 and 14-25. We were able to make some changes in the squad and play in different roles that we are not use to, so at the end it was good fun at the same time than practicing and taking the game as an useful session. Right after us, the girls of Team Northumbria Volleyball played as well, and scored another great result with a strong victory against the same university: 10-25, 14-25 and 11-25.

After the games, it was time to come back to Newcastle, very happy with a new victory and three new points to continue leading our way in the competition. And with the idea of planning a route up to Scotland to see and enjoy, with a little bit of more time, this beautiful part of the country.

Here is the video that Oscar shared from a training session back in November.


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