FENCING SCOTTISH OPEN
University of Stirling, Sat 10 & Sun 11 Jan
Uma eat your heart out
Barely has Kill Bill disappeared from cinemas than the next sword fighting ﬂick, Tom Cruise’s The Last Samurai, is on its way. It’s good news for the fencing clubs. ‘You definitely get a little surge after things like James Bond and Pirates of the Caribbean,’ says Judith Holmes, current Scottish Ladies Epée Champion. ‘A few of those people fall away, but most people who try it get hooked. It’s a sport you can keep learning and learning - and you can keep going till you’re very old. I know an 80-year-old lady who’s still going strong - she’s got a dodgy hip, but she’s got the technique.’
The practice will come in handy this month, when the Scottish Open hits Stirling University. Around 30 or 40 competitors are expected in each of the three disciplines (the foil and epée are thrusting weapons, the sabre also permits blows with the edge). Pool matches are won by the first fencer to score five hits, before direct elimination - requiring 15 hits - takes over.
Holmes, who is a member of Edinburgh’s Royal Commonwealth Pool Fencing Club and has represented Northern Ireland in international competition, says that while first-time spectators may take a while to get used to the sport’s speed, fencing is both a thrilling and precise spectacle. ‘You do get completely fired up, you want to get your point. The technical aspect is great. Every opponent is different, is a new problem. You work people out: it’s not about smashing swords around.’ (James Smart)
Events are listed by date, then city. Submit listings at least ten days before publication. Sports listings are subject to change, so please check in advance. Listings are compiled by Maureen Ellis.
Rugby: Edinburgh Rugby v Leeds Tykes Meadowbank Sports Centre. 139 London Road. 661 5351. 7.30pm. £15 £20 (£10» £13). lidinburgh's rttgby bravehearts have been involved in tnore competitions than most. what with various squad members playing down under. the Celtic Cup and the league catnpaign. Now they turnout for the third time in the Heineken Cup. hoping to brttsh aside Leeds in the same manner as Toulouse and the ()spreys.
Saturday 1 O
Football: Tennent’s Scottish Cup Third Round Various grounds across Scotland. 3pm. The first division and premier league teams are added to the Scottish Cup mix. See photo caption.
Basketball: Edinburgh Kings v Glasgow Storm Meadow-bank Sports Centre. 139 London Road. 661 5351. 6.30pm. £5 (£2). The Scottish Champions play host to (ilasgow opposition in the Scottish basketball league.
Ice hockey: Edinburgh Capitals v Bracknell Bees Murt'aylicld Ice Rink. Riversdale Crescent. 337 6933.
6pm. £10 (£6): family ticket £26. 1"B.\'l. League ice hockey match. lidinburgh‘s recent improvement in form should make them more than a match for the struggling Bracknell.
Rugby: Glasgow Rugby v Saracens Hughenden. 32 llttghenden Road. 353 3468. 7.30pm. £15 £17
(£6 £7 1. The Watford-based side travel to (ilasgow for the second leg of this litiropean Challenge Cup second round tic. (ilasgow pulled off a convincing win over .\lontpe11ier in l-‘rance to make it thus far. btit will need to itnprove on recent league fornt if they’re to progress further in the cup.
Outside the cities
Horse racing: Kelso Races Kelso Racecourse. Kelso. 01573 224767. £10 (£5; under 16s free). (iet 2004 off to a winning start with a flutter on the first national hunt horse racing tnecting of the new year.
Football: Partick Thistle v Dundee l‘irhill. 801-‘irhill Road. 579 1971. 3pm. l't'CC. Rescindng their status as Britain's only clttb yet to win a domestic gantc. I’artick Thistle's fortunes will well depend on their ability to secure a new manager. With (ierry Britton and Derek Whyte still at the helm they'll need to stave off injury worries to take poiitts off a debt-riddled Dundee side.
Football: Rangers v Motherwell lbrox Stadium. Iidmiston Drive. 0870 600 1993. 3pm. l’ree. The two clttbs
might share a history of players (Cooper. Butcher. (ioram et all but there will be no love lost as the ‘Well aim to do their worst against an injury-ravaged (iers side. Can they get their own back against former boss .Vcheish with another shock Old Firm defeat?
Athletics: DM Hall District Indoor Championships Kelvin Hall International Sports Arena. 1445 Argyle Street. 357 2525. Free. A major gathering of regional athletics clubs. competing in a variety of track and field events.
Ice hockey: Edinburgh Capitals v Dundee Stars Murraytield Ice Rink. Riversdale Crescent. 337 6933. 6pm. £10 (£6); fatnin ticket £26. FBNI. League ice hockey match as lidinburgh take on the much-improved Dundee side. Basketball: Edinburgh Kings v Glasgow D2 Meadowbank Sports Centre. 139 London Road. 661 5351. 6.30pm. £5 (£2). lidinburgh take on (ilasgow‘s other basketball giants in the national league.
Outside the cities
Football: Dundee United v Aberdeen 'I‘annadice Park. Tannadice Street. 01382 833166. 3pm. Free. In what has recently transpired as the derby of the north. Steve Paterson‘s side travel to 'I‘annadice hoping to overtake them and avoid the relegation quagmire. Football: Kilmarnock v Dunfermline Rugby Park. Rugby Road. Kilmarnock. 01563 525184. 3pm. I-‘ree. Both sides are fairly closely-placed in the league and Killie narrowed edged a 3 2 victory when the two sides met in the league back in October. Dunfermline's better league standing will be mitigated by their away disadvantage.
Football: Livingston v Hibernian .»\lmondvale Stadium. Almondvale Stadium Road. Livingston. 01506 417000. 3pm. liree. Bobby Williamson‘s fortunes this season have been as up in the air as his contract talks. Hopefully (‘IS Cup semi-final involvement will spur his side on to better showings. Can I.ivvy spoil the party‘.’
Bowls: National Finals Paisley Ittdoor Bowling Club. 8 10 Wallneuk Road. Paisley. 0141 887 6779. Free. Semi-finals and the final of the National Indoor Bowls Championships.
Basketball: Glasgow Storm v Boroughmuir Scotstottn Leisure Centre. Danes Drive. Seotstoun. 959 4000. 3.45pm. Free. National league basketball game as (ilasgow Storm play host to the Edinburgh-based side. Storm will be looking to wreak revenge following their away defeat in Wester llailes in October.
Basketball: Scottish Rocks v Newcastle Eagles Braehead Arena. Kings Inch Road. 561 l 140. 5pm.
£7 £10 (£5 £8). Will the Rocks be on a high following victory in the BB]. Cup Final or will they be licking their wounds after defeat at the hands of Sheffield Sharks? liither way they‘ll be looking to repeat last month’s winning performance over Newcastle. Athletics: DM Hall District Indoor Championships Kelvin Hall International Sports Arena. 1445 Argyle Street. 357 2525. Free. See Sat 17.
Football: Hearts v Celtic 'l'ynecastle Stadium. (iorgie Road. 200 7201. 3pm. l-tee. A CIS Cup defeat at Iiaster Road in December illustrated. finally. that Celtic are fallible. The Jambos will be looking to expose that chink lll their winning armour as Martin ()‘Neill's side return to lidinburgh.
OutSIde the cities
Bowls: National Finals Paisley Indoor Bowling Clttb. 8—10Wallneuk Road. Paisley. 0141 887 6779. Free. See Sat 17.
Tuesday 20 Edinburgh Ice hockey: Edinburgh Capitals v Guildford Flames Murraylield Ice Rink. Riversdale Crescent. 337 6933. 6pm. £10 (£6); fantin ticket £26. (iuildford ltave shown real stamina in the I-‘BNI. League this season and will surely be the favourite to secure the points as they travel north.
Climbing: Walking in a Dangerous Place Adventure Centre. South Platt Hill. Ratho. 333 6333. 7.45pm. £4.50—£5. Young traditional climber Ben Heason gives a talk on some of his highly-publicised ascents. Preferring on-sight bold and technical routes. he recounts some of his scarier episodes when leading ascents across four continents.
It is the stage on which dreams are made: the Tennent’s Scottish Cup, or giant-killing spree as it has been affectionately known, is upon us again. Last season’s winners Rangers narrowly scraped past Ayr, before being forced into a replay with Dunfermline. And lightening struck twice as Celtic bowed out to their lowly nemeses lnverness Caley Thistle. The 2003/4 season has already experienced insult, injury and intrigue: the cup can only heap on the excitement.
I Tennent’s Scottish Cup Third Round, Sat 70 Jan. www.scottishfa.co.uk
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