WAberthwaite Wrestling Academy Open Night


Saturday, 5th April - Academy Shield at Burnieside Cricket Club.
Sunday, April 13th - Angus Backhold Championship, Carnoustie Leisure Centre. Many categories male and female at under 15 years, and at 16 years and over

Waberthwaite Academy Open Night was a great success: in the hall not a seat was spare before the action started; forty-three wrestlers competed, many in the traditional strip; three hours of intense wrestling kept the crowd engrossed; the average age of the referees doubled when John Wilson took over for the final stint; a £2000 grant for more wrestling mats was announced; and the pies and mushy peas were excellent. Tom Porter, the main organiser at the academy, seems to have been around forever, but his club is bouncing with youth and energy.

Wrestlers from Carlisle, Kendal and Milnthorpe all made their way to the far west of Cumbria to compete in twelve different categories and the spoils were well spread out, though the Wilson surname, mainly from Kendal Academy was well to the fore in many sections.

Sam Wilson wrestled in three categories before winning the 12st BNFL trophy with his hanks and inside-clicks. His cousin George was head and shoulders above the opposition in the Under 16s, but Sam did take the middle fall with speed, hold and attack.

 Jack Ewart squeezes Jimmy Hall’s ears


Jack Ewart and his Carlisle Academy team-mate Jimmy Hall, had a long, but convivial Jack Ewart, a cheerful All Weights winnerwait before being called into action. Inevitably they met in the final. Jimmy Hall had returned from a long day rallying in the Borders. His route to the final was arduous with close bouts where he had to come from behind. In the semi-final, local wrestler CraigNaylor from Wasdale caught him with a swift buttock for the middle fall. Jack Ewart in the meantime was using his height and strength to hipe the 10st winner Andrew Woodend.


Jimmy Hall and Jack Ewart are the sort of lads you want to have around when there is heavy lifting to do, and Hall went straight into action with a lift and a backover twist. The wrestling mat and the village hall seemed very small with those two big lads bulldozing around, and, after much huffing and puffing , Ewart struck back by turning a defensive hank into an attacking position when he slipped over Hall's right leg and back-heeled him. In the end, Jimmy Hall's long day and accumulating tough bouts were too much for him and Ewart secured the deciding fall.


The Waberthwaite Academy has a plethora of good lads and it is no wonder that they have a star wrestler in Michael Kirkham, the Under 15/8st champion, who duly won the 8 stones.

 Carlisle Wrestling Club Points Winners (l to r) David Miller(11½st), Abi Marston (8½st, Girls 8½st, Girls Open), Harvey Alecock (6st), Thomas Wales (10st), Mark Wharton (7st, Under 12s), Thomas Gibson (Under 15s and Under 18s)
The signs are that next week's Academy Shield at Burnieside Cricket Club, Kendal, will be a close fought and intense affair.


Category Winners at Waberthwaite Open Night
Category Winners
Under 10 Years Thomas Wilson
Under 12 Years Harry Wilson
Under 14 Years David Bright
Under 16 Years George Wilson
Under 18 Years Dylan Fleming
5 Stone Jay Connor
7 Stone Jackson Southward
8 Stone Michael Kirkham
10 Stone Andrew Woodend
12 Stone Sam Wilson;
All Weights Jack Ewart;
Ladies Open Lynn Murray
Written by © Roger Robson ..... Photographs by © Roger Robson, Julian Richardson or Linda Scott (2014)

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