Sport In Brief: Sabres edge out Saints

City of Sheffield Saints missed out on a pre-Christmas bonus when they came off second best against inter-city rivals Sheffield Sabres at the English Institute of Sport.

Saints took the first quarter 21-17 and maintained a four point lead (33-29) at the break despite a series of missed shots.

Sabres edged the third period by two points and then blasted nine unanswered points to open up a 53-47 advantage after three minutes of the final quarter.

Garnet Gayle and Co. closed the gap to one point but Sabres held on to run out 62-58 winners and take the head-to-head by one point.

Team and scorers: Garnet Gayle 15, Nick Cockman 13, Jim Rose 10, Chris Hackett 9, Pete Olusoga 5, Luke Parker 4, Chris Law 2, Phil Drewett, Rich Fooks.

Saints’ next game is at Warrington on January 7.

Burkitt’s sailing award

Mark Burkitt is celebrating after receiving a prestigious award for his services to sailing. He was presented with the ‘Outstanding Contribution’ award in London by HRH the Princess Royal who is President of the Royal Yachting Association.

Mark was Commodore of Ulley Sailing Club, near Rotherham, from 2009 to 2011, a turbulent time in the club’s history.

In summer 2007, when he was Vice-Commodore, devastating floods threatened to breach the dam of the reservoir and for four years the club members were unable to sail on their home waters.

The club was faced with a great deal of uncertainty and disruption during that time and following his election as Commodore in 2008, Mark worked hard to keep the club together:

“Every member of Ulley Sailing Club has given me a great deal of support through recent years,” said Mark. “This award is as much theirs as it is mine.

Skater’s Smart move

British Junior Ice Dance champion Olivia Smart has finished full time schooling to become a full time ice skater.

The 14-year-old Sheffield High School pupil won the British Junior title a few weeks ago with her ice dance partner and now they’re ready to hit the big time.

Olivia, who is part of the GB Junior Ice Dance squad, will train in New Jersey for several weeks at a time and will have home schooling when she’s back in Sheffield.

She’ll return to Sheffield High to take all her GCSE examinations through 2012 and 2013.

In the New Year Olivia travels with the GB team to Poland for an International competition and in mid-January she’ll discover if she has been selected for Junior World Championships in Minx, Russia.

Magnificent 7 races

Doncaster’s new Town Moor fixture over jumps next Thursday (December 29) is a seven-race programme, set to begin at 12.10pm. The feature race is The Lynn Higgins 60th Birthday Novices’ Handicap Chase, a contest for stayers over three-and-a-quarter miles while novice hurdlers take part in the opening race. A shuttle bus will be in operation from the railway station.

Schools double up

Notre Dame and King Edwards VII netted title glory at the National Schools Badminton Championships.

In the Sheffield leg of the Center Parks competition which featured the best players from Y7, 8 and 9 across the city, Notre Dame won the boys event and King Edwards topped the girls.

They will now go on to compete in the Regional and National Finals which will be held at Center Parks, Sherwood Forest, next April.