The Women’s side have been drawn alongside tricky opposition; Durham University, Newcastle University and The University of Nottingham, in Group A.
The girls are in fine form going into the tournament: winning eight of their last nine matches, but they will need to perform in the same manner as they did in the latter stages of the season, according to Ashley Fantazia, who has a wealth of experience in the competition.
“For me, I have played for Northumbria and I know how competitive a program it is, I know a lot of the players in Durham as well. It is going to take everything that we have, to really come together. We are going to have to stick to that character that we have shown throughout the second-half of the season and what we attained against the game against Oxford,” she said.
At Our Best
However, Fantazia was also very wary of the threat of the Northern sides and added that the team will need to be in top form to compete against them.
“We are going to have to play the best volleyball that we have ever played to be able to really contend. I think we totally have a shot. I don’t think the North is ready for us. I honestly don’t think that they are going to be prepared for where we have come in the second-half of the season,” she said.
The Blues face Durham on Friday evening to open the weekend of pool play. The squad have a 0-3 win loss ratio going into the match, but are looking to make amends and cause the first upset of the tournament. The women are straight back on court on Saturday for matches against Newcastle and Nottingham.
Durham were runners-up in the BUCS Premier North division on 27 points, whilst losing just one match. They missed out on the Championship to Northumbria University via set difference.
Newcastle finished third in the Premier North division, winning five and losing five matches in the process as they accumulated 15 points. Nottingham finished fifth in the Premier North division, winning just two of their 10 matches.
UEL Volleyball travel up to Bournemouth on Friday for what could be their final BUCS matches of the season, follow all the action on UELSports LIVE! Twitter feed and for live streaming tune into UELSports Facebook Page.