Roller derby returns to Urmston

First published in Sport
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The exciting sport of roller derby is returning to Urmston.

When Manchester Roller Derby (MRD) hosted the first game to be held in Urmston back in March the area welcomed roller derby with open arms. Now MRD is set to bring roller derby back to Trafford. Ticket holders will be treated to not one but two games of the full-contact sport. The first bout of the day sees Manchester’s female ‘A’ team, the CheckerBroads take on Granite City Roller Girls from Aberdeen. The last time these teams met it was a nail-biting game – expect nothing less this time around.

The main event will be Manchester’s male ‘A’ team, the New Wheeled Order, as they put on a fine display of men’s roller derby in their headline bout against South Wales Silures Roller Derby.

Roller derby is a fast-paced, hard-hitting sport, which has been described as ‘like rugby on roller skates’. The full contact sport is played on quad roller skates and has seen an influx of interest in the UK since the release of Drew Barrymore’s movie Whip It, which hit cinemas in 2009.

Two teams skate together on an oval track and points are scored by one individual from each team, known as a jammer. The jammer will have a star on their helmet. They must fight to get through the pack against hard defensive play from the opposing team and with the help of their own team. Each jammer scores points by passing members of the opposing team.

Those who still haven’t heard of roller derby are not alone. The sport is still largely unheard of in the mainstream, despite there being over 3,000 skaters and nearly 100 roller derby leagues in the UK as of April 2013.

Manchester Roller Derby is the UK’s first co-ed roller derby league (men and women skating alongside each other). The MRD All-stars co-ed team took first place at the first co-ed roller derby tournament to be held outside of America. MRD also formed a men’s roller derby team in 2011.

Female ‘A’ team captain, Sirenide, a 25-year-old skater from Altrincham says, “This bout will showcase Manchester Roller Derby’s top two teams - so if you want to see some high-end roller derby, this is the event for you. The last time we played this team there was literally one point in it.”

The men’s ‘A’ team captain, known as Darth Sebious on the track, added, "This is New Wheeled Order's first home bout of the season and we want to win - it's as simple as that. It's a great feeling when all those hours put into training are put to the test, there's nothing quite like it."

The bout is being held at George H Carnall Leisure Centre, Urmston on Saturday, June 8. Doors open at 1pm and first whistle will be at 2pm. Children are welcome as this is a family friendly event. There will be cakes, merchandise stalls, DJs and a raffle.

Tickets cost just £6.50 in advance and can be bought from Manchester Roller Derby’s official website http://www.manchesterrollerderby.com.

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