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Cardiff and Vale College Sport Academies celebrate their best season ever

Cardiff and Vale College’s Sport Academies have bounced back from the constraints placed on sport during the pandemic to celebrate their best-ever season in 2021-22.

The Academies have seen more students getting involved as players than ever before and have brought home a record amount of silverware in regional and national competitions. The number of players receiving regional and national honours has also skyrocketed.

This season saw the Basketball Academy win the Association of Colleges Welsh Basketball Championships after entering for the first time, progressing on to represent Wales Colleges Basketball at the AoC National Championships at Nottingham University. Captain Josh Brown represened Basketball Wales U18 and was also named captain of Wales Colleges at the AoC National Championships.

The Cricket Academy saw nine of its players receive caps for representing Wales.  Their final fixtures are against Wellington School on Tuesday 28th and Wednesday 29th June, where they will play a 50 overs match and a 20-20 on consecutive days.

The Football Academy were English Colleges Football Association CAT2 league winners, and students from our ILS department won the Welsh Colleges Ability Counts Football Tournament, progressing on to represent Wales Colleges at the AoC National Championships.

In women’s rugby, the Academy saw its first Wales National Seniors representative, Gabby Healan. Gabby was also one of four players who represented Wales at U18 level.

Rachel Thomas-Evans represented Wales in touch rugby and 11 players represented Cardiff in regional U18s. Rugby Academy player Millie Purchase-Smith also represented Wales in water polo.

And in men’s rugby, six players made the Wales national U18 squad and two at U20 level. William Hawker also represented Wales at Welsh Athletics U20. A significant number of the College’s rugby players also represented their region.

Finally, in the climax of a hotly contested televised match at the Principality Stadium, the Rugby Academy won the WRU Schools and Colleges League cup, proclaiming it to be the best college team in Wales.

CAVC Group Principal Kay Martin said: “After an extremely difficult and challenging two years where sporting events were seriously curtailed, the CAVC Sport Academies certainly came out fighting.

“Our Academies foster and develop sporting excellence while also supporting the players’ education needs, and the results this year have been outstanding. We’re all extremely proud of them all, and of the specialist staff and coaches who work so hard behind the scenes to support such sporting success.”