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Ace result for tennis club at Stirling Sports awards

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University Tennis Club members accept the Student Club of the Year Award
Students Holly Smith and James Swanson, second from right, accept the Student Club of the Year award from swimmer Robbie Renwick, second from left, flanked by Robbie's coach Graham Wardell, far left, and Professor David Lavallee, far right.

The University’s high flying tennis teams collected the Student Club of the Year at the Stirling Sports Awards.

There were also honours for triathlete Marc Austin, named Student Athlete of the Year, at the showcase event held at the Doubletree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro.

In the past year, the tennis club – based at the Gannochy National Tennis Centre on campus - has more than doubled its membership, now 150-strong. It has five men’s and two women’s teams who have won a plethora of Scottish and British university competitions and collected the bronze medal at the European Universities Team Championships.

The club was also recognised for developing a range of initiatives including cardio tennis, touch tennis and a disability tennis programme for the Stirlingshire community.

“I think it’s great to receive this award and be acknowledged for all the hard work club members have put in,” said University Tennis Co-ordinator Holly Smith, 23, a Fourth Year Sports Studies student. “It’s not just about the successes of the scholarship players, but all the teams and the people who come down to support the teams or try the sport for the first time.

“There are a lot of people at the University who are passionate about tennis and it’s clear from how busy the courts are just how popular the sport is here in Stirling.”

The tennis club held of the stiff challenge of the men’s football club, whose teams collectively play more than 160 matches and the University Golf Club, who won the European Universities’ Men’s Teams Championships, captained by Scottish Amateur Champion Zander Culverwell.

Culverwell and World Championship Open Water swimmer Danielle Huskisson were pipped to the individual title by Mathematics student Austin, who capped off a strong season with a World Junior Triathlon Championship silver medal.

Golfer Hannah McCook was also nominated for the Sporting Endeavour Award in recognition of her strength to recover from two wrist operations to earn her first senior international selection, all whilst regulating her Type 1 Diabetes. In 2014, McCook will compete with her Stirling team-mates on the Orange Blossom Tour, the leading women’s amateur tour.

David Lavallee, Head of the School of Sport at the University, said: “The Stirling Sports Awards are a fantastic way to recognise the great sporting achievements across the City and I would like to extend my congratulations to all the winners and nominees. The University of Stirling has a proud history in developing sporting talent and enabling athletes to combine their sport with their studies to excellent effect.”

The Stirling Sports Awards are hosted by Active Stirling, ClubSport Stirling and the University of Stirling, recognising the outstanding achievements, efforts and commitment of Stirling’s sports clubs, teams, athletes, coaches and volunteers.

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