Surfers Paradise recently played host to the highly anticipated UniSport Nationals which has over 6,000 students from across the country competing in over 30 sports. Among the many universities that participated, UNSW truly stood out with over 300 athletes, including some exceptional student-athletes who are part of the Elite Athlete Program (EAP).

One of the standout moments for UNSW at the UniSport Nationals was the remarkable performance of the Taekwondo - Div 1 Men's team, which clinched the coveted Gold in the Teams event. Notably, several EAP members made their mark on the individual front. Ryan Lee and Alex Manefield both secured gold medals, and Osama Almabrouk earned a well-deserved silver medal, adding to UNSW's impressive tally. UNSW's Taekwondo success wasn't limited to these three outstanding athletes. Marco Seidenberg and Noori Cheung, both part of the EAP, contributed significantly to the team's overall achievement.

UNSW Taekwondo
UNSW Taekwondo clinching Gold

The Women's Touch Football team, led by Emily Thomson (elite athlete & recent recipient of the Touch Football Leadership Award), were very unlucky just missing out on gold claiming silver in the Division 2 final against University of Melbourne.

Women's Division 2 Touch Football
Women's Division 2 Touch Football

In the Ultimate Frisbee - Medal Div 1 category, UNSW continued to excel with their silver medal-winning team. This team was incredible to watch on and off the field with their constant support towards their team and their opposition showcasing their ‘spirit circles’ to award player MVPs. More of our EAPs Mack Calder, Elysia Chua, Curtis Ly, Shinrin Shaban, and Angela Pidgeon were instrumental in this silver medal performance. 

The Ultimate Team
The Ultimate Frisbee Team (aka 'The Stubbies')

Men's Fencing Team Epee, UNSW clinched the top spot, earning the coveted gold medal. Aedyn Pratley, an EAP athlete majoring in Engineering, competed in his first Uni Nationals and played an essential role in the team's triumph. Peam Palakawongse Na Ayutthaya, an EAP student studying Science, also displayed several excellent performances. 

Mens Fencing Epee Event

Table Tennis Div 1 witnessed fierce competition, and the UNSW team, featuring EAP athlete Victor Lim, put up a stellar performance to secure the silver medal. Watching this live was quite a spectacle barely being able to capture the tiny white ball in full flight during the effortless rallies. A really strong team to look out for in future competitions. 

Table Tennis
Men's Table Tennis Silver Medalist

The rowing events were no exception to UNSW's triumphant journey at the UniSport Nationals. Pat Burke (studying Data Science) and Nik Pender (studying Actuarial Studies & Advanced Maths) teamed up to win the gold in the men's pairs event. Beating UTS by a resounding margin of 4 seconds in the final had UNSW earn yet another gold medal and further emphasizing the university's excellence across a wide range of sports.

Men's Rowing
Mixed 4 Rowing Silver Medalist

Other notable results were women's Badminton Div 1 bronze, men's Basketball Div 2 bronze, mixed Lacrosse Div 1 bronze, open Lawn Bowls gold and mixed Oz Tag bronze.

Beyond the medals and victories, what truly made the UniSport Nationals unforgettable was the incredible atmosphere of unity, sportsmanship, and positivity. UNSW athletes, whether they won or faced defeat, demonstrated an unwavering support for their teammates and displayed utmost respect for their opponents. You could feel a sense of family and belonging at every event, teams cheering on their university teammates while they wait for their own games, and always looking out for one another. 

2023 UniSport Nationals was another huge success for UNSW and we would like to extend our congratulations and thank you’s to the students, the officials, UniSport and of course ArcSport for taking care of the students over the last week. Looking forward to next year!