22 Apr 2021
Summer Term 2021 - Sports Report Week 1

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Summer Term 2021 - Week 1 Sports Report


After a warm-up even on Tuesday, Thursday saw the golf team of Adam Reid, Tom Holtby, Charlotte Brook and Felix Wigley take on the Leaf Academy in a new format of golf (I would love to tell you the rules but I signed an NDA so can’t). On paper it should have been an easy win for the Leaf as they had the lower handicap golfers but the match was played over 5 holes on the Canford course. To add to the drama and pressure on the players, the whole match was being filmed, including using drones, and there were interviews after the holes.

The quality of the Canford golf was superb, with almost all holes parred. The highlights were the deliberate shot into the tree guarding the 4th hole so that the ball dropped straight down onto the green and some impressive putting from one of the Leaf girls who couldn’t miss from anywhere on the green. However, shot of the day was Tom Holtby who hit his tee shot on the extended 6th hole (playing 220 yds) pin high and gave Canford an impressive victory of 50 seconds (I told you it was a new format!).

So Canford Golf team won, I think, the first piece of sporting silverware of 2021!


This week it has been fantastic to have all the pupils back out on court after a year off last year due to the pandemic. Not only have the courts been buzzing throughout the games sessions, but after prep and in the evenings it has been great to see so many pupils out enjoying the sport.

For most of the tennis players, this week it has been dusting off the tennis cobwebs working on contact point, consistency and remembering what it feels like to serve. All pupils have worked hard whilst the staff in charge of their session worked out who we think will be placed in the various teams at this stage. Always an uncertain time for all, but we have been really impressed with the pupils’ attitude and efforts.

Looking forward to this coming weekend of our fixture with various teams in action against Taunton.


It was wonderful to see the athletics track alive and busy after lying dormant since the summer of 2019. Many athletes are finding themselves throwing heavier implements, hurdling further distances and over higher hurdles, having missed a season’s training. This has certainly not dampened their spirits and with music playing, the throwers and jumpers have worked hard on their fitness this week, by completing High Intensity Interval Sessions. The middle distance runners have been enjoying the delights of the North and Canford SANGs and Mr Lelliott has been putting the sprinters through their paces.

Next week the athletics coaches will have their eyes peeled for those athletes pushing themselves to throw further, jump higher or run faster.


A fantastic start and welcome back to school sport was made much easier by the exceptional weather this week.

This has allowed all year groups to have the opportunity to use the new grass net systems and the seniors a middle practice for the upcoming new Dorset Independent Schools Cricket 100 ball Trophy competition. This will be contested between ourselves, Clayesmore, Bryanston and Sherborne culminating in a final pre half term.

Our girls section has been training regularly in the nets in preparation for the first match against Parkstone Grammar next week and players are excited to hopefully finally play a hardball match.

Seniors Tom Prest and James Barker have been in action away with Hampshire Academy and Tom in particular has taken the opportunity to show some outstanding early season form He hit a hundred against Sussex Academy followed up by a double hundred this weekend against Surrey Academy.


With a new start into the Summer Term most rowers have returned and numbers are at normal levels with around 90 pupils enjoying the river and the Boat Club. As ever all newcomers have been made welcome! Buzz Borneman and Archie Gardiner have been nominated as 2021 boat club captains and our congratulations go to both of them.

The development of the girl eight continues with a new initiative towards racing at National School Regatta (NSR) at the end of May.

Archie Gardiner and Ben Shaw are also working towards NSR and will decide which to choose between a coxless pair or a double scull.

Our Shell boys and girls are plentiful in number and looking forward to a fixture in May with Bryanston School while our 15s will host Bryanston here at Canford.

So all’s good from the banks of the Stour river with plenty rowing and sculling to come.


Girls’ touch rugby returned this term after a small hiatus.

We have begun exploring invasion games ‘principles of play’ in the first week with great enthusiasm. Most notably go forward and support, so we’ve been looking at games that allow the girls to run with the ball. This has taken a little time to switch mindsets from all the netball they have been used to, in particular re-familiarising themselves with supporting the ball carrier and space, allowing the attacking team to quickly move the ball on turnover to areas of the field where there are fewer defenders.

Week 2 will see us try to transfer these principles into a pass back only game. The girls have shown great levels of work rate off the ball and in particular, looking to take up positions in space or to deny space. Standout performers in week one were Lauren Boyd and Sydney Brown.


Just before the Easter break the lacrosse girls enjoyed a house competition. Due to Covid restrictions the House matches were just played by the UVI Year group bubble this year and numbers restricted it to just three teams – combined Beaufort and de Lacy, Day Houses and Marriotts – the current Stick holders.

The Combined Day houses were looking the strongest on paper and did indeed carry the day scoring eight goals and conceding only two. Sana Iftikhar and Charlotte Glen were their top scorers while their secret weapon was complete beginner Lucy Norris who was a dervish dynamo all over the pitch.

In second place, Marriotts saw relentless drives from Nadia Lees and Catalina Taylor which proved too much for Beaufort and de Lacy despite a spirited fight back led by Eleanor Warner and Maddie Lyles. For Beaufort and de Lacy Ella Mitchell was valiant in the goal while Molly Fairbairn translated her formidable hockey skills pretty successfully onto the lacrosse pitch with some piercing attack play. Marriotts Goal Keeper Sasha Witter however managed to keep the shots out without using her stick most of the time while Gemma Kendal in attack had done her research and played in true “Wild Child” spirit up in the attack.

Thank you to all the new recruits to lacrosse for making the House Games possible and for playing with such shriekingly good verve!


Although she left last us as a pupil last summer it was fantastic this week to see Martha Taylor named in the new Great Britain Elite Development Programme Squad. This group usually provides the next tranche of Olympians and after the Tokyo Olympics are completed this summer GB Hockey will start to look to the future from within this group. A great example to all our hockey players to what can be achieved with the right attitude and hard work and we look forward to following her progress.

Canford Sports Department – Team of the Week

See the photos / attachments for the new team of the week. Across all the sports and year groups those who made the team were nominated by their Heads of Sport for standing out in terms of their attitude, commitment and performance.

Latest sports reports, news and future fixtures at www.canfordsports.com.

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