It’s that time of year again – Varsity is here, and the University of Sheffield is looking to overcome Sheffield Hallam to win its eighth consecutive title. With 20 days of sporting events taking place across 10 venues around the Steel City, Sheffield Varsity 2020 promises to be an unrivalled festival of sporting excellence and fanatical support.
Last year’s Varsity triumph was a landmark achievement for Uni of. Having led throughout the entirety of the competition, the Black and Gold rode out 45.5-32.5 winners, its biggest ever winning margin. Not only did this earn the university a seventh title in a row, but it secured an eleventh varsity crown since the competition began, overtaking Hallam’s haul of ten.
This year Varsity begins on Friday 13 March, with the Equestrian event starting at 10.00am at the Parklands Equestrian Centre.
The following weekend, on Sunday 22 March, the Chill Factore in Manchester will play host to the snowsports section of Varsity, which involves both freestyle skiing and snowboarding.
Uni of will be looking to repeat its snowsports success of 2019, when it left the French Alps with a 3-1 lead over Hallam.
Wednesday 25 March is SHU Sports Park Day, one of Varsity’s biggest and most hectic days.
Women’s and mens’ teams playing six different sports including football, rugby league, rugby union, cricket, ultimate frisbee and lacrosse will battle over the course of the day.
All eyes will be on the Octagon Centre the following night, as the hotly anticipated boxing takes place. Hallam won 8-3 last year, so Uni of will be eager to get revenge.
As in previous years, both the mens’ and women’s 1s football matches will take place at Hillsborough Stadium, this time on Saturday 28 March with 1:30pm and 4:15pm kick-offs respectively.
After Hallam snatched the points last year with a 1-1 draw in the W1s and a thrilling 2-1 win in the M1s, two tightly fought games and a raucous atmosphere are guaranteed.
As was the case in 2019, the final act of Varsity 2020 is the Ice Hockey Final, played at the FlyDSA Arena. If last year’s finale is anything to go by, then we’re in for a treat. Hallam, traditionally Ice Hockey favourites, won 5-4, but Uni of put in an extraordinary effort to take the game the distance.
After the conclusion of the game, the Varsity trophy will be lifted by the victorious side.
Tickets are needed to attend SHU Sports Park Day, Boxing, Football 1s, Ice Hockey 2s and the Ice Hockey Final, and can be purchased from the Students’ Union Box Office. All other Varsity events are free and un-ticketed.
If you can’t make it along to any of the events, then comprehensive Varsity coverage will be available at forgetoday.com/varsity, our Twitter feed and Facebook page as well as on our Youtube livestreams at Forge TV.