They came, they saw, they conquered. 17 sports, 14 venues and 11 days of thrilling action that captivated a global audience. Not to mention a nation transfixed by the record-breaking haul of 53 Commonwealth Games medals for Team Scotland to smash the previous best of 33. Glasgow 2014, also known as the best Commonwealth Games ever, will live long in the memory. But what next for the sports and stars who made the summer of 2014 so special?
The answer, we are delighted to say, is plenty!
There are lots of opportunities to see the 17 sports on show during the Games, not to mention many of the 310 athletes who made up Team Scotland – if you know where to look that is. Which fortunately we do! So sit back, relax and read on for your indispensable guide to the rest of 2014 and beyond.
And where better to start than Judo a sport in which Team Scotland won no less than 13 medals at Glasgow 2014. This Saturday 4th October the Emirates Arena opens its doors once again to the Glasgow European Open, and this time it’s the finest female judoka in Europe who will battle it out over seven weight classes.
Scotland’s Louise Renicks and Sarah Adlington, gold medallists from the Commonwealth Games, will be in action alongside teammates Stephanie Inglis and Sally Conway who won silver and bronze respectively, in what is a star-studded GB line up. Entries have been received from 14 different countries in all, with competitors fighting for medals as well as valuable world ranking points for the Rio 2016 Olympics. Tickets are available on the day, see the preview on our Events! page for details.
It’s a weekend to savour for Commonwealth Games sports fans with athletics taking centre stage on Sunday 5th October. The Bank of Scotland Great Scottish Run will see some 30,000 runners take part with the star attraction an all-time distance running legend, Ethiopia’s Haile Gebrselassie, back to defend his title in the elite men’s race he won last year in the fastest time ever recorded in Scotland for a half marathon. In the elite women’s race there’s plenty of Scottish interest including last year’s winner, Susan Partridge, who finished sixth in the Commonwealth Games marathon. The races take in some of Glasgow’s most iconic landmarks, see our feature for build up and spectator information on the day.
The athletics action continues with the cross country and indoor seasons. The Emirates Arena will host national indoor action as from December, and for cross country fans the National Championships in Callendar Park, Falkirk on 22nd February is the highlight of the season when some 2000 runners and 2000 spectators join together to enjoy a festival sporting atmosphere. Stay tuned via the Sport on Spec website, social media and e-newsletter (as below!) for all the spectator info in the lead up.
In netball the Netball Premier League (NPL) 2014/2015 season is underway with matches taking place at the Emirates Arena. We’ll have advance notice of all of them via our Events! page starting on Wednesday 8th October: a triple-header of action featuring all six teams in the league and including a mouth-watering game between Scotstoun 1s (last year’s champions) and East Kilbride, arguably the two top domestic teams in the country who boast no less then seven members of the Scottish Thistles national team in their ranks. An evening of three top-class matches for the price of one; and entry is free!
Hockey is another sport where the new domestic season has recently started, the top teams in the country playing in the men’s and women’s National League, Division 1. The Glasgow National Hockey Centre, where hockey at the Commonwealth Games took place, is the home ground for Kelburne and Hillhead men’s and women’s teams, as well as the venue for domestic cup tournaments and internationals throughout the season. Kelburne Bromac men are once again the favourites – the stand-out team in Scottish hockey having won the league ten years in a row they are gunning for an eleventh title and with Team Scotland internationals Michael Bremner, Chris Nelson and Iain Scholefield in their squad they have a formidable team. Spectators are welcome at all the matches and we’ll be profiling them in advance via our weekly e-newsletter and Events! page.
Another iconic Commonwealth Games venue will host cycling’s National Track Championships taking place from Friday 17th-Sunday 19th October. Cycling at the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome was without doubt one of the hottest tickets of at the Games as the likes of Sir Bradley Wiggins took to the boards, and witnessed some amazing scenes of jubilation as Scotland’s Aileen McGlyn & Louise Haston and Katie Archibald won medals and Neil Fachie & Craig MacLean (captured in action above by official Team Scotland photographer Jeff Holmes) sealed a historic double gold. The atmosphere once again promises to be electric as Scotland’s finest compete in the Velodrome later in October. Tickets are now available with general ticket news is available via the Scottish Cycling website and for a limited time period only tickets at a discount of up to 50% are available via Groupon
Boxing also registered highly on the decibel stakes at Glasgow 2014, with Scotland securing no less than four medals including gold from Josh Taylor and the inimitable Charlie Flynn. The one-day Home International between Scotland and Wales on Saturday 11th October promises a bumper afternoon of boxing entertainment not to mention an opportunity to see the next generation of amateur stars. Taking place at Edinburgh College from 1pm tickets on the door are just £10 for adults and £5 for U16s/concessions.
Into November it’s the turn of badminton and the Scottish Open Badminton Championships at the Emirates Arena from Wednesday 19-Sunday 23 November 2014. Part of the Badminton World Federation Grand Prix event series, a host of international starts are expected including Scotland’s Commonwealth Games silver medallist in the women’s singles, Kirsty Gilmour (pictured in action below) and mixed double’s bronze medallists Imogen Bankier and Robert Blair. The fastest racquet sport in the world with the shuttle reaching speeds of 200mph+ this is a spectator sport that has to be seen to be believed. Tickets are currently on sale via the BADMINTONscotland website with an early bird discount for tickets purchased by 19th October. Watch out also for news of Yonex Scottish Nationals taking place in Perth between 30th January-1st February 2015.
The action continues apace at the end of the year with gymnastics and the Glasgow World Cup at the Emirates Arena on Saturday 6th December. A limited amount of tickets are available here but note this is an event likely to sell out well in advance. Then in 2015 the SSE Hydro hosts the most prestigious tournament in the sport, the World Gymnastics Championships, taking place from 21st October to 1st November An event where Scotland’s gymnasts, including Daniel Keatings and Daniel Purvis, will look to replicate their stunning medal performances at the Commonwealth Games against the best the world can offer. Tickets are currently on sale via the official website.
Into the pool and last weekend swimming fans had a treat when the Scottish Swimming Team Championships took place at Tollcross International Swimming Centre, the scene of so much memorable action during the Commonwealth Games. On Friday 12th December it’s the start of the National Short Course Championships at Edinburgh (scene of the diving at the Games), an event recognised as the premier short course meet in the UK. The competition, held in a 25m pool, is sure to include members of Team Scotland in races covering breaststroke, backstroke, butterfly and freestyle. We’ll bring you ticket news on that as soon as it’s available.
Shooting fans will need to wait until March 2015 for the next opportunity to see top-level competition on home soil. The wait should be well worth it though as the Scottish Air Rifle Championships returns to Kincardine. The year’s championship gave spectators an opportunity to watch Scotland’s Jen McIntosh – now the most decorated Scottish medal winner in Commonwealth Games history – in winning form before she went onto secure a bronze and silver rifle medal at Glasgow 2014. Likewise in weightlifting if this year’s Scottish Open Championship were anything to go by the 2015 event, also to be held in March, will provide spectators with a unique and close up vantage point to watch Team Scotland athletes such as Peter Kirkbride and Louise Mather, the latter pictured below at Glasgow 2014.
For wrestling fans the 2014 season may be over but we are in touch with the Scottish Wrestling Association and promise to provide updates of fixtures for 2015 once available, including news of when Scotland’s freestyle bronze medallists at the Games, Viorel Etko and Alex Gladkov, will be in action. In triathlon as the summer ends Scottish athletes such as David McNamee and Marc Austin will head into serious winter training as they prepare for warmer weather and the 2015 season. Likewise in Lawn Bowls the greens have been covered up for the rest of 2014 with the big event of next year – the National Championships in Ayr – already fixed for Tuesday 28th July-Sunday 2nd August.
Rugby 7s was a sport at the Games enjoyed by many at Hampden Park. Next year has a double dose of fixtures with the 125th playing of the Melrose Sevens on 11th April 2015, followed by the Emirates Airline Glasgow 7s at Scotstoun on 9th and 10th May. Both are sure to draw a big crowd with tickets now available via the Melrose Sevens and Scottish Rugby websites.
Just two sports to go and with squash fixture news pending for 2015 we will update on that shortly. However table tennis fans of Scotland’s No. 1 Gavin Rumgay will be delighted to know they only have to wait until January to see him exhibiting not only his undoubted skills, but also his unique celebratory pose perfected during the Commonwealth Games. The West of Scotland Grand Prix takes place between 30th January-1st February 2015 in the Gorbals and a repeat of last year’s epic finals between Rumgay and Edinburgh’s Craig Howieson would be a definite crowd-pleaser. There’s also the National Championships next March in Perth to look out for. See below for details of how to ensure you don’t miss out on either!
So … just a wee bit to take in :-] Want to make sure you don’t miss any of the action? Easy! Subscribe for free to the Sport on Spec weekly e-newsletter where you will receive all the latest news including dates for your diary, the week ahead and ticket promotions. Likewise follow our Twitter and Facebook pages for daily updates and competitions, and of course bookmark the Events! page on the SoS website, always with the next 7 day’s sport available for you to view.
The best way to ensure you don’t miss a moment of your favourite sports – not to mention discover some new ones!
Yours in Sport,
Founder – SportonSpec
*Pictures in this feature used by kind permission of Team Scotland’s official photographer, Jeff Holmes. His Commonwealth Games portfolio can be viewed at JSH pix.*