2012 Coptic Olympics
The second annual Coptic Olympics took place on the third weekend of September at the Coptic Centre in Birmingham. Since the last Coptic Olympics, the sport facilities at the Coptic Centre had been improved with new space for spectators to watch the basketball, tennis and football.
Saturday began with a Divine Liturgy in the Church and afterwards an opening prayer ceremony. To conclude the ceremony, the timetable of events for the day was confirmed and teams were told where to go for their relevant fixtures.
People from all over the Diocese had come from as far as North Wales, Oxford, Manchester and Nottingham as well as visitors from London and Rotherham. Whilst the sporting activities went on, there were several food & drink stalls and fundraising events taking place around the centre including face painting and a creative raffle.
There were a few intense moments in the day, especially in the Men’s and Junior football events when matches finished with a draw and had to be settled by penalties.
One highlight of the event was 8 year old George Gabriel who came 2nd in Junior Chess and was commended for his patience and calmness. Another was the effort people put in to attending this year’s Olympics with people travelling huge distances such as Andrea who flew from Ireland especially to support his church (on his birthday!)
By 7pm all the events had finished and the results were collected by committee members. After the Raising of Incense, the results ceremony started with a quick word of thanks from Fr Youhanna to everyone for attending, to the committee that organised the event and their church teams, the clergy, those who prepared food and to those who organised the fundraising events. After the results were validated the winners for each event were announced. His Grace Bishop Missael awarded the winning teams with medals and trophies. The sporting champions of the day were by far Manchester whom had reversed their position in relation to last year to become both Junior and Overall Champions. However, the “Love & Sportsmanship” trophy this year was awarded to Llandudno for the Juniors and to Birmingham (whom came 3rd in only one event) overall for the Christian behaviour observed throughout the day across all events by the clergy. This pushed up Llandudno into joint 2nd place for the Junior competition and pushed up Birmingham to joint 1st place in the Overall competition. It was a great day of Christian fellowship and a fitting tribute to His Holiness Pope Shenouda III.
The official results (from copticolympics.org):
Points are awarded in every event to churches that participated and no points are given to churches that did not participate or had their team(s) disqualified; maximum points are awarded to 1st place with the fewest points awarded to the church that came last. Churches awarded the “Love & Sportsmanship” trophy by the referees and clergy were awarded three extra points (shown in brackets).
|Llandudno||9 (+3)||Joint 2nd|
The winners for each event are as follows:
Junior Football: Nottingham
Women’s Football: Birmingham
Men’s Football: Rotherham
Junior Basketball: Manchester
Women’s Basketball: Manchester
Men’s Basketball: Birmingham
Junior Volleyball: Manchester
Women’s Volleyball: Manchester
Men’s Volleyball: Manchester
Junior Tennis: Manchester
Women’s Tennis: Birmingham
Men’s Tennis: event cancelled
Junior Table Tennis: event cancelled
Women’s Table Tennis: Manchester
Men’s Table Tennis: incomplete competition
Senior Chess: Nottingham
Junior Chess: Birmingham
Darts: event cancelled
Overall Boardgames: Birmingham
Overall Junior Swimming: Llandudno (and Oxford)