The Glasgow Taxis Cup would not happen without Volleyball on the schedule, and having defeated Strathclyde and Caledonia in last year’s competition the Glasgow University Volleyball Club is back to show how good they are. Having started the year with almost a completely new lineup, it took the team sometime to find their feet. But with less than a week to go, they seem set to defend their title.
The captain, Robyn Dunbar-Smith, is hoping that this year their teams will bring it on and win the Taxis Cup again. “It’s hard to tell this year what are our expectations. We play both Caledonian and Strathclyde in our league and it has been a mixed bag of results so far.” She remarked. “We beat Caledonian most recently, with our final match against Strathclyde just a few days before Taxis Cup and we are hoping for the best! We are currently sitting 2nd in the league behind an extremely strong undefeated St. Andrews side.”
With a completely revamped training schedule, now including an extra session of strength and conditioning, the team are doing everything they can to give themselves every advantage over their Glaswegian rivals. “Last season we were undefeated apart from one game against Aberdeen. Coming into this season, we had a complete change of lineup in our first team with only three players remaining out of twelve. Coming into second semester, we have definitely found our feet as a team and are confident about what’s to come.”
The team has been training with a new coach, Tom Rooney since the beginning of the year, who is focusing not only on training the team physically, but also teaching “mental toughness” to the girls as a team to help and bring the Taxis Cup trophy back to Glasgow University. “He has been pushing us further than most of us have been before. It took us a while to build a strong presence on court, and lost some matches in 1st semester that in retrospect, we just should not have been lost.”
However, despite the new emphasis on the strength of the team, they are not without their star players, with Dunbar-Smith noting that Roza Dimogkioka is one to watch. “All of our players lend their individual strengths to the team. But Roza girl is always loudest on court, and keeps us fighting when she sees everyone’s heads drop. Her power hits are also not something to be reckoned with and she’s always a stable and consistent player!”
The Women’s Volleyball Club have every reason to look forward to the Glasgow Taxis Cup on March the 15th, having upped the ante despite winning last year’s title. Now with a settled team and a few star names amongst their ranks, it will take something really special to stop them.