UQ chasing gold at UniSport Nationals

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Image credit: Emily Davies

A team of more than 420 University of Queensland students and staff will descend on the Gold Coast for the first UniSport Nationals Div 1 competition from 22-27 September. 

390 UQ students will compete at the event – formerly known as Australian Uni Games – against participants from 43 Australian universities.

UQ will field 39 teams across 26 sports, including baseball, cycling, fencing and golf.

400-metre runner Daniel Parnell has been selected as UQ’s team captain.

The Bachelor of Business Management/Arts student said it was an honour to represent UQ at the maiden event.

“It’s a pretty special thing to be leading our team into Nationals Div 1, and something I will cherish for many years to come,” Mr Parnell said.

“The diversity of our representation across many sports is huge and says a lot about the strength and accessibility of our University’s sporting regime, as well as the support of our governing bodies.”

Parnell said he expected UQ to challenge for the overall Champion University title.

“Some of our teams – including hockey, judo, sailing, tennis, touch, and ultimate disc – won gold medals at the final Australian Uni Games event, so it’s important we get behind each and every member of Team UQ,” he said.

“Given we pretty much have a home-ground advantage, what makes us stronger as a team is the support we give each other – I’ll be making it a priority during the week to visit other venues to cheer the maroon and blue!”

Team events feature a promotion-relegation system, with the two lowest-ranked universities relegated into Nationals Div 2 the following year. 

UQ Sport Student Engagement Manager Adin Hewat said UQ will compete in a wide array of sports.

For the first time at a UniSport-sanctioned event UQ will compete in kendo, while the University will feature in squash after a 13 year Uni Games absence,” she said.

“Team UQ will also compete in Rugby 7s, with the competition to be run as a Div 2 event.

“The two top-ranked universities will earn promotion to Div 1 in 2019.”

Selected Div 1 gold medal matches will be streamed live on Thursday 23 September via UniSport’s website and pages.

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