Vision can exclusively announce that a new College Varsity tournament against Durham is set to be introduced this year to replace the defunct White Rose Varsity against Hull.
The event, which will be held in either February or early March, will see a number of York’s top college teams represent the University against their Durham counterparts in a range of sports.
Roughly eight or nine sports are expected to be involved, including the most popular college sports such as football, rugby, hockey and netball, with either one or two fixtures to be played in each sport.
The exact manner in which teams will be picked to represent York is yet to be confirmed. However, it has been suggested that the prestigious slots will be determined by playoff matches between the leading teams from the first term.
IF SUCH a system is implemented, then it is possible that this will help to generate more interest in College Sport over the months leading up to the event.
York Sport President Cassandra Brown told Vision: “I’m thrilled there’s finally a competitive tournament for college level players here at York. As the second best institution for participation level sport in the UK, the weekend will demonstrate just how far York’s college sport programme has come, particularly in recent years.
“The beauty of it and its difference to Roses, is that it will showcase the talent of our fantastic college sport players rather that our university players. And one of the most exciting things about it, is that it will grow year on year.”
The tournament is set to become a regular feature of the York Sport calendar, with the venue to be alternated from one year to the next in the same manner as Roses.
College Sport Officer Dave Washington added: “I thoroughly believe that this exciting development will help to push forward College Sport over the coming years, and should be a successful, innovative and groundbreaking tournament.
“Hopefully everyone will embrace the event, which will provide the opportunity for college sports players to represent their University. This is new and exciting!”
“All in all I’m delighted that this is happening, and it will provide us with the perfect chance to showcase our excellent college sport system against the powerhouses of Durham.”
Durham is renowned as the leading University for college sport in the North of England, and has been ranked as having the highest participation rates in collegiate sport.
Over recent years York has established relations with the reputable institution through the creation of events such as the James-Collingwood tournament, which is set to take place in week 6, and most recently this weekend’s competition between Langwith and Josephine-Butler.
It was announced over the summer break that White Rose Varsity would be cancelled indefinitely, after the problems endured at last year’s event, which was hosted by Hull for the first time.
A series of organisational failures and farcical developments undermined the tournament, most notably the fact that the eventual winner was not decided after the initial day of competition.
Planning for this new tournament is still in the early stages, but more details are set to be released over the coming weeks, as plans are put in place to create another successful sporting event at the University of York to work alongside Roses.