The 2021 Summer term began in earnest with the promise of the return of competitive inter school fixtures for the first time in over 14 months.
The first few weeks of the term would remain internal with cricket and tennis players using the time at Hilsea to prepare for fixtures while the athletes used HMS Temeraire for their preparations.
Unfortunately, when fixtures were due to recommence the weather of the first half term had not got the memo and many of the scheduled fixtures were lost to persistent rain which always seemed to fall late on Friday or Saturday morning. This did not however dampen spirits and PGS Sport was able to compete in athletics fixtures away at Millfield, Lord Wandsworth College and Marlborough College as well as hosting the Track and Field Cup at The Mountbatten Centre. The highlight of the athletics season for an individual athlete was Fola Odofin taking part in the English School Athletics Championships as a Hampshire representative.
This year’s sports days have taken a more individual year group approach due to COVID-19 regulations. We have seen some outstanding performances across the week including Fola Odofin, Year 9, breaking the 100m record and Koby Craig, also in Year 9, breaking the Triple Jump record.
The cricket season although curtailed mainly by weather did produce a number of fantastic block fixtures for both the girls’ and boys’ sides. It was brilliant to see the U14 and U15 grills sides progress to hard ball cricket across the course of the season. The U12 and U13 side’s introduction to cricket has seen a huge number of pupils take part in fixtures which finished with 8 girls’ fixtures against St Swithuns all hosted at Hilsea Playing Fields.
The boys cricket sides also battled the conditions to finish the season in incredible fashion. The U12 and U14 sides progressed to the semi-finals of the Hampshire cup, while the U13 and U15 sides presented PGS in the final of their respective county cup competitions. The U15s were successful in beating Winchester College to progress to the next round of the national competition where they beat Sherborne School before facing Millfield School in the regional semi-final. The team travelled to Somerset the day before this game to give themselves the best opportunity possible and produced a fantastic performance to beat Millfield School. A strong Bradfield College side now stood between PGS and the National Finals. The boys were magnificent again but lost the game with only five balls remaining. The team should be immensely proud of their efforts and will hopefully use this experience as a stepping stone to greater success in the years to come.
The Tennis season mainly consisted of midweek local fixtures and internal Saturday training. This training proved popular throughout the year groups with many pupils attending across the term. The tennis teams played a number of games across various age groups which culminated in a block fixture with Churcher’s College on the penultimate weekend of fixtures. The final weekend saw the introduction of the Family Bubble Tennis Tournament with families competing in a sliding handicap tournament for the chance to be group PGS Family Tennis team of the year.
The term itself saw another enormous effort from both pupils and staff to ensure PGS Sport continues to progress in what has been a different year to the one many would have expected. I wanted to thank the PGS Sports Department and Academic staff who give up so much time to ensure pupils have these brilliant opportunities, the catering and ground staff for their work behind the scenes and most importantly the pupils for their efforts and commitment.
Pre-Season training starts shortly for Hockey and Rugby and we look forward to a competitive schedule in September!