Featured image credit: CCSU

Varsity 2023: Ones to watch

The highly anticipated annual clash between Canterbury Christ Church University (CCCU) and the University of Kent Canterbury (UKC) is right around the corner.  

Here are the ones to watch as both sides battle it out to be named Varsity champions.   

American Football 

For the C4 Chargers Corey Maiden has been elected as this year’s player to watch. 

Playing in a defensive position Maiden has been described as a “menace to quarterbacks in the back field.” 

His team have credited him as “one of the biggest threats on our defence this year.” 


One player you do not want to miss is Jade Laura as she takes the track by storm. 

Despite some time out this season, the long-distance captain has remained dedicated to her craft.

Keep an eye out for Laura on the finish line as she brings it home for C4.


Aisling Leckey has been chosen as the one to watch for the badminton team.  

She has proven herself to be a dedicated member of the team, who is always giving 100% commitment.

She has massively improved and continues to show the same enthusiasm as always, which is why she is such a valued member of C4 Badminton.


Freshman Christopher Emmanuel is definitely one to watch on the court in this year’s game against UKC. 

His teammates have described him as “a dangerous left-handed slasher who scores most of his baskets by attacking the paint. “ 

The C4 shooting guard is not just a devasting attacker but also incredibly valuable on the defensive end, a real force on the perimeter and capable on the interior.


C4 Jet Maisie Jones is the one to watch at Varsity this year.  

Her teammates are looking forward to the upcoming competition with Jones by their side as she is “an incredible asset to the team.”  

At the base of the pyramid, we will all be seeing Jones support her team as they compete for a winning title. 


On the wall and one to watch this year is experienced climber, Andy Layton.  

The C4 captain is skilled in both climbing and bouldering and will be pulling out all the tricks to bring home the win.  


On the women’s team Abi Balcombe is one to keep an eye on during the game. 

Previously playing for Surrey county Balcombe was vital to this year’s BUCS campaign.

Her teammates said: “She’s not just an incredible cricketer but an incredible character too. The club really wouldn’t be the same without our little fresher.”

On the men’s team it is wicketkeeper and batsman Jack Patterson. 

After stepping up his batting role this year, Patterson has shown to be a “consistent performer in the local league” spectators should keep an eye out for him on the field.  

After a great season of Cricket, we all hope that our ones to watch can bring home the win for Christ Church.  

The fierce local rivalry continues with this latest instalment. Image credit: CCSU


Bringing winning energy to the stage this year is dancer Emma Lawrence. 

With not one rehearsal missed all season, Lawrence is ready to turn up the heat at Varsity with her energy and sass.  


Megan Solly Tuffs has been chosen as the one to watch this Varsity after a successful season where she one best overall at her last competition.  

With all the practice she has put in there will certainly be no hurdle to high for her this Varsity.  


For the men’s team it is James ‘Milly’ McMillan who we will be keeping our eyes on when the match commences against UKC. 

“He’s been relentless all year, any full back he’s come up against this year he’s torn them apart and sent them home crying.” 

Up for star player from the women’s team is goalkeeper Sian Barber.  

“All season she has had great performances making huge saves at crucial moments and always has a positive attitude which helps uplift the team.” 

It’s Barber’s second season as C4 goalie and she’s already repaid that faith with some vital stops this season.


Attacker Ryan Murphy is this year’s one to watch, entering his second season with the side, Murphy has contributed a large number of goal to his team.

However, what makes him more valuable to the side is his leadership skills, on and off the pitch, which be a huge boost ahead of this massive fixture.


Fresher Harriet Caitlin for the women’s first team has definitely made a big impact on the pitch this season.  

They have faced plenty of tough competition but with Caitlin’s strong field presence, the team are determined to take home the win.  

For the men’s team, it is midfielder Harvey Little who will want to add a second varsity goal to his collection.

It was a season of change for Little, moving from upfront to midfield but that has not stopped him from controlling games and hopefully, his silky skills will bring home the win.


Sam Kimber will definitely be a challenge to UKC this year on the pitch as he plays midfield and face-off for the men’s lacrosse team.  

Kimber’s incredible ability is spread between his play both on and off the ball. His knowledge of Lacrosse is what inspires play within the team and motivates the other players.

For the women’s team Chloe Skeete steps in as the one to watch. 

Whether Chloe is scoring goals or sprinting down the pitch she’s always smiling and motivating the team.

Spectators will be cheering loud from the sidelines this Varsity as we watch Sam and Chloe put their skills into action. 


Centre for the team, Chelsey Grimes will be unstoppable on the court for her upcoming competition against UKC. 

Her teammates said: “On the day of varsity, we can guarantee she will make a difference on the court and get so many turnovers making the difference in the game.” 

Pole fitness  

Magnus Hayze has been tipped as pole fitness’s one to watch at Varsity this year by his team, an injury meant Hayze was asked to compete last minute.

Competing in the advanced category we all cannot wait to see the high level skills and tricks he has planned for his routine. 


Always a fan favourite at Varsity, this year both CCCU teams have a strong line-up. 

For the men’s team we will be keeping our eye on Jordan Constant has proved himself this season with plenty of big hits and huge tries week in, week out.

For the women’s it is flanker Hannah Sandeman whose fearless attitude will be stopping UKC in their tracks.  

She’s a lethal player, but most importantly a great leader and a role model to beginners. 


Taking to the slopes and one to watch is Slalom racer Dylan Ali. 

Nicknamed Lightening McQueen, for his speed on the skis, Ali is no amateur as he has been practising the sport since the age on 10. 

His teammates said: “What Dylan lacks in age, he makes up for in the way he masterfully handles himself on the slopes, slashing his way down with the utmost grace and decorum.”

Swimming and Water Polo  

Hitting the pool this Varsity is one to watch, Abby Ward.  

Having constantly improved her times this past season Abby is definitely expected to make waves this year against UKC.  


Dan Pennet will be making some serious serves this Varsity as he is tipped to be one to watch. 

His team have credited him for playing like a true Wimbledon champion and we are all hoping that this continues as the match against his UKC opponent draws closer. 


Wiktoria Okupnik is ready to spike the ball this Varsity as she is deemed to be a player to watch.  

Okupnik may be in her first year in Volleyball but this hasn’t held her back from progressing this season, being a natural fit in the side.

Her teammates have described her as their, “little cannon,” for her incredible spike, which will hopefully make an appearance come Varsity.

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