The popular rivalry between University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent has kicked off with this year’s Varsity series.

It began with Rugby League being played at Lady Bay on Saturday, with NTU scoring its first victory – beating Nottingham by 22 – 18.

This year a staggering 31 sports are being played with super Wednesdays have the highest number of sporting fixtures being played.  The headline events ice hockey and basketball, will face off and tip off at the city’s Motorpoint arena.

rugby league

Nottingham Varsity is not only a competitive sporting event in a student’s calendar, but it is also seen as being a key social reunion. The sport of varsity encourages fans and friends to come together to support their teams, with chanting.  Many students feel that alcohol is also an important aspect of the fun.

shoes off

Tickets for this year’s varsity sold out in just under 10 minutes – a record breaking time, with many buyers choosing to purchase a season ticket in order to attend as many events as possible. Matt Nicholson VP Sport of Nottingham Trent said that varsity has become more popular in Nottingham due to the fact that they have access to some of the best sporting arenas in the city.

NTU futsal men (indoor 5-a-side football) came away with a victory of 6-5 last night at the UoN David Ross sports village. UoN women’s football beat NTU 2-1 on penalties.

With both Universities having over 25,000 students, a lot of planning is required in the lead up to varsity. Four entities support the series-University of Nottingham sport department, UoN students union, Nottingham Trent student union and NTU sport department.

The varsity series is run as a ‘not for profit’ event, and although they do receive sponsorship it is moving towards a more campaign focused event. For the past two years Nottingham varsity series has supported the rainbow lace campaign;  playing with rainbow laces and introducing medals on rainbow ribbons this year.

The campaign seeks to kick out homophobia/giphobia/transphobia in sport, and all sales of the rainbow laces will go to the charity, Stonewall.