Picture credit: Ganesh Rao

The University of Sunderland’s American Football team, the Spartans, wrapped up their training camp schedule this week, at the Raich Carter Sports Centre, in preparation for their pre-season opener away at Manchester Tyrants.

Having narrowly avoided relegation last season from the BUCS 1A North Division, the Spartans will hope that this season proves to not only be a much more competitive one, but also a much more successful one for the team under the guidance of head coach Pete Nichol.

With the Spartans regular season kicking off on November 5 against Glasgow Tigers, coach Nichol and his team will be keen to get off to a winning start in Manchester this Sunday.

And despite Manchester Tyrants being a division below the Spartans, coach Nichol is well aware of the challenge that they pose to his team.

“It doesn’t matter to me that they (Manchester) are a division below us, they are a good team that has the ability to ask us alot of questions.”

“Every time we have played them, the game has always been really competative so I will be expecting exactly the same thing.”

And with the new season just around the corner, coach Nichol was keen to stress the importance of hitting the ground running.

“This season, I am looking for the boys to start with a bang and then push hard the rest of the season.

“If we can do that then I don’t see why we cannot find ourselves at the top end of the table this year, maybe even challenging to titles.”