Roses, the annual sporting tournament between the universities of York and Lancaster, is set to be cancelled following the suspension of a number of Lancaster’s teams.
Lancaster University Students’ Union announced that they will be pulling out of this year’s tournament via Twitter last night following the behaviour of the University’s sports clubs at infamous university sports tour, Saloufest, held annually in Salou, Spain.
The University of Lancaster have suspended all clubs who attended the event last week, including Football, Rugby, Hockey, Netball, Cricket, American Football, Lacrosse and Ultimate Frisbee. As a result, YUSU have reluctantly agreed to Lancaster’s request due to the largely depleted fixture list.
Saloufest has regularly grabbed the headlines for sports clubs misbehaviour, attracting national media attention highlighted this year by The Daily Mail.
A spokesman for Lancaster University told Vision: “It is with great regret that we pull out of this year’s Roses tournament, hosted by the University of York. Unfortunately the behaviour of our sports clubs is something we are unable to turn a blind eye to. The events that took place on the sports tour are need to be taken very seriously, hence the suspensions. We will not be commenting further on this matter.”
York Sport President Charlotte Winter said in a statement: “The cancellation of Roses is a real kick in the teeth. I’m angry that the sporting highlight of the year has been ruined by bureaucratic decisions and I’m sure our sports clubs, who have an excellent disciplinary record, will be too. On a personal note, I’m gutted not to be able to play having missed my matches last year after one too many jägerbombs the night before left me with a ruined ankle.
“As you would expect, a lot of organisational work, not to mention a lot of money, has gone into sorting Roses this year and now YUSU will be left to bear the costs. We will be looking for financial compensation and clubs will be contacted via email later today regarding arrangements.”
The cancellation is more bad news for York’s sports clubs after Varsity failed to live up to expectations due to organisational problems marring the one-day event at Hull University last term.
Netball 1sts captain Nina Pullman said: “I’m absolutely fuming – for myself and a number of the other girls, being third years, this was our one last hurrah in terms of sport at York. That’s now been ruined by people being drunken idiots, which we couldn’t affect at all. It’s a disgrace.”
Lancaster’s players have recent history of bad behaviour at Roses, with the rugby team being suspended in 2011 following abuse of staff, defecation on campus and streaking at major events. Other students also drew attention, including one student who announced “Everyday I’m gobblin’” whilst performing oral sex in a packed lecture theatre.
This year comes as only the second time that the annual inter-university sports tournament, Europe’s largest, had been cancelled in its 50 year history, with the other occurrence coming in 1978 when York pulled out following the discovery of several Roman coins on 22 Acres which led to York’s famous playing fields being dug up in a major archaeological project that was, ultimately, unsuccessful.
Happy April Fools’ day! Tickets for the Rugby 1sts at Huntington Stadium will be available from the YUSU site later in the week.