Rugby 7s star Marcus Watson is guest of honour at Emmanuel School’s Foundation games

Trinity Academy

Wednesday, 22nd March 2017

Rugby 7s star Marcus Watson is guest of honour at Emmanuel School’s Foundation games

YOUNG athletes enjoyed a silver lining to their annual 'Olympics' when a special guest arrived to endorse their efforts

YOUNG athletes enjoyed a silver lining to their annual 'Olympics' when a special guest arrived to endorse their efforts.

Team GB Olympic silver medal-winning Rugby 7s star Marcus Watson was guest of honour at the annual Emmanuel School’s Foundation games.

Every year students from the four ESF schools – Emmanuel College, Gateshead, Bede Academy, Blyth, The King’s Academy, Coulby Newham and Trinity Academy, from Thorne, near Doncaster – take part in a host of fixtures with sports including rugby, football, volleyball, cross country, netball and hockey.

After a day of fierce competition, Mr Watson, who plays for Newcastle Falcons, told students: “You start playing sport because you enjoy it but if you are good it soon becomes very serious and may not be as much fun. The important thing is to remember why you started and to keep having fun with your friends.”

In a question and answer session, he told student about his experiences at the Rio Olympics.

“It was so great just being with the other athletes, whether that was a 7ft 3in Chinese basketball player or a gymnast half my size,” he said.

“It was incredible being in the lunch queue with the likes of Usain Bolt, Michael Phelps and the Williams sisters. It felt really special winning silver, though a little odd too as we were celebrating despite being hammered in the final by Fiji.”

Mr Watson then handed over the ESF Bowl to Frankie Middleton, the deputy head girl of Trinity Academy, which will host the next ESF Olympics.

Netball players and cross-country girls from Trinity Academy celebrated winning their competitions, while the rugby was won by The King’s Academy, Bede Academy took the football and hockey, and Emmanuel College won the volleyball and boys’ cross-country.

David Page, principal of Triniy Academy, said: "Although we are one family of schools, individual loyalties come to the fore at this popular annual event, where everyone is competing for the honour of their particular school.

"It's a great day of competition and it's always a pleasure for our students to visit our sister schools and meet new people from across the region.”