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Nartey leads UEL medal charge at BUCS Nationals

Olympic judoka strikes gold for third year running in Sheffield

Judo sports scholar Emmanuel Nartey led the University of East London (UEL) to a highly successful weekend when he won gold for the third year running at the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) National Championships in Sheffield.

Emmanuel, who competed for Ghana at the London 2012 Olympics, took on three opponents before beating Strathclyde University’s German Duran to take the gold in the -81kg (1 Kyu & above) division.

It was UEL’s first gold of the weekend and set the University on its way to a 10-medal haul of two golds, four silvers, and four bronzes.

Emmanuel could not contain his delight after his triumph, taking to Twitter to write, “Won my 3rd British University National Title. Strong as Hulk.”

He later added, “The final was my easiest fight of the day, to be honest. Because my technical level and experience were very difficult for him to handle, I was just waiting for him to make a mistake and then throw him for ippon.

Emmanuel was also full of praise for the expert help he and his fellow sports scholars receive at UEL.

He said, “When you look at the support athletes get from UEL, then it is clear to understand that the University sees sport as an important aspect of education, social development and personal development.”

UEL team-mate Jayden Sullivan claimed UEL’s second gold medal of the weekend, and UEL’s first ever medal in karate.

And UEL’s success in martial arts continued as Emmanuel’s two judo colleagues also brought home medals. Sebastian Potter won bronze in the -90kg (1 Kyu & above) category and Muhammad Umar Khalid took the silver in the MK -60kg (2 Kyu & below) division.

The UEL athletics team also got in on the medal-winning action, with Commonwealth Games hopeful Corinne Humphreys sprinting to silver in the 60 metres, Eavion Richardson winning silver in the triple jump and Mobolaji Adeokun taking bronze in the 60m hurdles.

The men’s 4 x 200 metres relay squad added a bronze on the final day, beating Sheffield University to the podium by just two hundredths of a second.

Team GB Kirk Slankard won UEL’s only medal in fencing, earning himself a bronze in the men’s sabre.

Swimmer Michael Gunning completed UEL’s medal connection by winning silver in the 200 metres butterfly to add to his three previous BUCS medals.

John White, UEL’s Interim Director of Sport, was delighted with the University’s overall performance.

“Every year we go to the BUCS Nationals, and we always deliver,” he said. “This is a great addition to the season. We’ve already won four of our BUCS leagues and bringing 10 medals home from Sheffield has put us in a great place to improve on our league position from last year.  

“We will continue to ensure that our programmes, staff and facilities are world class. We always aim to give the best athletic support to our students, on and off the court, and we feel that this is what makes us stand out from other universities.”