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Sports Awards 2020

Cambridge Celebrates Inaugural Sports Award Winners

The first ever University of Cambridge Sports Awards was scheduled for April 2020 and whilst the event couldn’t go ahead as originally planned, the awards were delivered digitally, recognising another exceptional year of student sport.

Nominations were received for recipients across seven categories including individual and team/club awards. Over 120 nominations were received, and shortlists for each category published in the middle of March.

A panel of Senior University representatives was formed to select the winners of many of the categories, but the “Sporting Moment” category went to the public vote. The winners of each category were published over the course of a week via the Sports Service social media platforms and website.

University Director of Sport, Nick Brooking, said “whilst naturally everyone is disappointed that the event itself could not take place, I am delighted that our Clubs’ support team managed to put this together “virtually”. Other traditional end of year events may have been cancelled but we have enabled a lot of brilliant people to be recognised for their achievements. The stories behind the headlines are inspiring and I am so glad that these people and their actions have been deservedly recognised and celebrated.”

The Team of the Year was the first to be announced. The Small Bore Rifle Club were the winners, recognising the Team which won first place at the British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) Short Range Championships for the fourth consecutive year. At the same event, the second team qualified for the finals and finished sixth overall, only a few points short of a medal position.

The shortlist for the Outstanding Contribution contained seven individuals from seven different sports and, due to the significance of their achievements, the panel opted to present the award to all seven. Between them, they had just shy of 40 years collective experience of Cambridge sport. From coaching to captaincy, sandwich making to charity fundraising, and everything in between – all seven had made a massive impact, not only on their Clubs, but sport at Cambridge as a whole. Full details of the recipients of the award, and quotes from their nominations can be seen here.

Magdalene College student, and member of Cambridge University Cycling Club, Alex Petter was a worthy winner of the Sports Club Personality and had received a significant number of nominations for the award. One of those to nominate Alex for the award said “CUCC simply would not be the thriving Club it is today without Alex’s presence.” Alex is Club President for 2019/20 and has run the Club during a period when he has been undergoing cancer treatment;

“Even when he was up in Manchester Monday-Friday for radiotherapy he was running the club as enthusiastically as ever; organising training camp, ensuring rides always took place, running the committee and much more than I could possibly list.  And when he was back in Cambridge at weekends he would be there at Brookside at 9am for the club rides.”

The Unsung Hero Award is for someone “that quietly does all the work that makes the Club/Team/League etc. function.” This year, it was awarded to someone who was described as running the women’s cricket cub “almost entirely single-handedly” for the last two years. Gonville & Caius student Holly Tasker is approaching the end of Medical studies at Cambridge. Not only is she currently in her second year as President of the Women’s Cricket Club, Holly has also been a key member of the Cambridge University Student Sport Advisory Group and on the Committee for The Ospreys, Cambridge’s Women’s Sport Society.

Winners from the University of Cambridge 2020 Sports Awards.


The shortlist for the Sports Person of the Year featured four outstanding sportswomen from four different sports. The eventual winner was Fiona Bunn, a UCAPP supported athlete who has achieved Blues in three sports during her time at Cambridge. In addition to her achievements representing Cambridge against Oxford, the Natural Sciences student from Queens’ College has also achieved the best ever results for Great Britain at the Junior World Orienteering Championships in 2019 where she won a gold and silver medal. Within one of the nominations for Fiona, it was highlighted she had not only achieved in her sport, but also in her studies:

“It’s easy to run out of superlatives to describe Fiona’s results in the past year, but I think to truly do it justice one has to understand what else she has done in the meantime. A top performer in her Natural Sciences Tripos and co-captain of both the Orienteering Club and Hare & Hounds, she’s hardly been short of work in the past year.”

The Club of the Year Award aimed to recognise a student sport club that had achieved success across participation, performance, leadership and sustainability. The 2020 recipient was Cambridge University Powerlifting Club. It has been a year to remember for the Club including Varsity success, national titles and GB representation at the World University Games.

The “Sporting Moment” was the last Award to be announced, following the public vote. A staggering 55% of the votes were received by the winner, Alex Schlindwein of Cambridge University Fencing Club. During the 2020 Fencing Varsity, Alex led a heroic comeback. When it looked as though the CUFC Men’s Blues had lost the 113th Varsity Match, Alex showed a cool head and single-handedly clinched victory in what has been described as “the most epic comeback in CUFC Varsity history”.

OSB Events, Imprint Signs and & Graphics Cambridge and PlayerLayer were kindly all due to support the 2020 Sports Awards Event, and we look forward to working with the organisations as plans are put in place for the 2021 Event.

Full details of all of the 2020 nominees and the winners can be seen here. Students, Clubs and Teams will be awarded their trophies on their return to Cambridge.