Upham – County Champions playing at a National Level!

[UPDATE: Upham Primary featured on BBC South Today, 19 May 2014]

Competitive sport is very important to us all at Upham. Our children are enthusiastic to be involved in all of the many sports we offer but it is our football team who enjoyed spectacular success this year!

On Saturday 22nd March, boys and girls from Upham CE Primary School took part in the FA Small-School 7-a-side football, South West of England finals.

Their journey started way back in November 2013 when they took part in the Hampshire tournament. The children were ecstatic to have won this competition and become Hampshire Champions.

So Upham represented Hampshire in the regional final, held in Bristol. The competition was strong, each team there being a county champion in their own right. Confidence was quite low to start with, the other teams looked very organised and everyone just wanted to join in and have an enjoyable day. In a very close grand final game, the deadlock was broken by a fabulous Upham strike in the last few minutes to win the title. Some of the children have written accounts from the match for a creative writing competition, Cormac describes the decisive score:

‘Our centre midfielder, Alastair, readied himself for a shot. Then he pulled the trigger. He scooped the ball into the air, everyone’s heart thumping, hoping that it would nose dive into the goal. It did. We all heard the faint sound of the ball scraping against the back of the net! He had done it! Alastair had scored in the dying seconds of the final. The whistle blew and everyone bundled on Alastair with smiles on their faces’.

Mums, dads, brothers and sisters cheered the children on, as was their teacher and coach Mrs Sothcott and Headteacher Mr Woolley. We are all so proud of what the children have achieved. What made this win so gratifying is that they won it together, as a team; never giving up and supporting each other when they made mistakes. We encourage all of our children to participate in as much competitive sport as possible and they have all had success locally but to have our little, family school now competing at a National level, against sides from across England is truly amazing.

So boys and girls from Upham CE Primary School are not only Hampshire Small-schools Champions but now South-West of England Small-School Champions and are unbeaten in the whole competition so far. Their journey continues on to the England finals in Birmingham on May 24th where just eight teams from the whole of England will remain. Who knows what the next step will hold? Upham children are starting to dream … and why not, they might just go all the way!