The Marriot Hotel was the scene of great rejoicing as the annual GUSA Blues Reception took place.
The awards ceremony — a pinnacle of the university sporting calendar as part of the GUSA Ball — is held annually to acknowledge those university teams and students who have made outstanding contributions to sport over the years.
GUSA President Euan Miller hosted the Reception to present the various accolades — Full Blues, Half Blues and Awards — to those nominated by the student body across the entire campus.
Miller opened the ceremony by highlighting the achievements of Chris Wilson; the swimmer was magnificent at the Scottish University Championships, winning gold in the 200m IM, silver in the 100m Breaststroke and bronze in the 100m IM. Emma Reid’s performance at the events was similarly admirable, with gold in the 400m, silver in 200m and bronze in the 4x50m freestyles; as Miller reflected:
“This achievement is even greater when you consider that she really considers herself a long distance swimmer.”
The awards recognise Glasgow students who have been called up to play at national level in their respective sports. This landmark achievement has been reached by various individuals. Alasdair Mott’s lacrosse career was, according to Miller:
“Given its silver lining when he was selected to represent the Scotland senior squad,”
Additionally, Chris Paton was called up to the national under-19 team. Kevin McCloy was particularly outstanding in representing Athletics, finishing third at the Scottish Championships — an event not exclusively set up for Scottish nationals but remarkably open to an international field.
The awards also distinguish those students and teams who have turned out for their sport at the British Universities Championships. Sarah Finlay managed this feat in Riding, reaching the regional final of the competition, while David MacPherson won a Judo silver medal in the national event. The senior men’s boat team also finished second at the British Universities Regatta, which preceded their selection to represent Great Britain at the European Universities Regetta in which they finished eighth.
Many Half Blues were given to those students who have reached the Scottish Universities Championships. In athletics, Andrew Douglas was crowned champion at the 3000m for the second time. Miller reflected on yet another encouraging homegrown success in waterpolo:
“Suzy Lewis had never played waterpolo before coming to university but she has grown into an excellent player.”
Lewis’ progress was marked by her being asked to train with the national squad in addition to her participation in the Scottish Universities Team at the Celtic Nations in Dublin.
This year marked the introduction of a new award, the Rebecca Cooke Trophy, to recognise the most outstanding sportswoman at the university. The award’s name is a fitting reward for the student who has achieved the remarkable feat of winning the Bob Wilson Memorial Trophy for each of the last six years. Emma
Mason, with five international and four Scottish badminton titles to her name, had the honour of lifting the new trophy in its inaugural year.
As well as outstanding individuals, the ceremony acknowledged the excellent performances of particular clubs. The women’s rugby team was given the William
Ross Cunningham Memorial Trophy whilst the boat men’s first squad, in light of their performance at the Regatta, were similarly revered with the Proctor and Gamble Millennium Trophy.