Posted on May 24, 2017

Special Edition – COBIS Senior Games

Sheffield UK Thursday, 18th May – Sunday, 21st May 2017



The St. Catherine’s Secondary Games team returned from the UK on Monday after a truly remarkable three days of sporting competition.  After the initial disruption of the cancelled outward flight to Manchester on Wednesday afternoon, everything else went superbly well.  The venues were all of top quality – the swimming on Day One was in the Pond’s Forge International Sports Centre, the Athletics on Day Two was held at the Sheffield Hallam University Athletics Stadium whilst the Final Day of football competition was at the English Football Association’s St George’s Park Sheffield Graves Hub.  Credit must also go to the Sheffield City Council and Sheffield Hallam University Sports Department for their splendid co-ordination of the global three day event.  And global indeed it was with 27 teams from as far abroad as Hong Kong, Nigeria, Uganda, the Middle East and Europe!

Day One in the pool was dominated by the “Big Four” schools from the Middle East – Dubai College, the British School Al Khubairat, Doha College and the British School of Riyadh.  However St. Catherine’s team performed really well with the following achieving places in the swimming finals: Kalypso Panagiotou (Freestyle and Butterfly), Estella Zacharias and Anna Wantenaar (Breaststroke), Elizabeth Tsakos (Freestyle), Irene Tsakos (Breaststroke) as well as Stefanos Lamaris (Breaststroke), Viktor Grigorakis (Backstroke) and Konstantinos Kakaletris (Freestyle).  The team points tally was further boosted by the fact that we made it into all four relay finals – places which boasted double points.  The net result of this superb team effort was that St Catherine’s ended Day One in 5th position behind the Middle Eastern “Big Four.”

Day Two saw intense competition on the track and in the field at Hallam University’s Stadium.  The vagaries of mixed weather helped nobody in particular but there were some amazing athletes on show.  The St Catherine’s team performed with great determination and the first individual medals were achieved:  Anna Bougos won silver and Estella Zacharias won bronze in the Girls High Jump, whilst Emily Maker-Stroubou won silver in the Girls 400 metres.  For the boys Viktor Grigorakis in the Triple Jump and Konstantinos Kakaletris in the Javelin both won bronze.  With the Girls relay squad picking up double points in a 4th place finish, narrowly missing out on bronze, the team finished in 5th again in the Athletics.  Nevertheless the combined total of the first two days saw St Catherine’s move into 4th place overall!

And so to the Final Day of competition in football.  Both boys and girls were placed in a group of seven with the International School of Moscow, the Regent Secondary School, Abuja, The British International School, Cairo, the British International School of Riyadh, St George’s International School, Luxembourg and King’s College, Madrid.  Intense competition saw the boys win four of their games and lose two whilst the girls won four and drew two.  This meant that both teams finished as runners-up in their respective groups thereby progressing to the quarter-finals – indeed one of only three schools that were able to get both girls and boys to this stage.  The result = more team points!  The boys came up against a really strong Al Khubairat team (the eventual runners-up) and went down 3-0 whilst the girls were involved in a nip and tuck encounter with King’s College, Alicante.  Unfortunately they succumbed to a single goal of real quality in the latter stages of the game.  Needless to say Kings College went on to win the girls’ tournament.

The nerves were very much on edge as the final presentations took place and they remained so when we realised that we had finished 4th in the football competition – so where would be in the overall rankings?  But first we were delighted to be chosen as the Fair Play Trophy winners – this is chosen by all the other teams in the competition and is due testament to the sporting values of our St. Catherine’s team.  Bravo indeed!

Colin Bell, CEO of COBIS, kept everybody on edge as he counted down from place 27 to the top three – at first he called out St Catherine’s in 4th place but then he realised his error and corrected himself – we had won the bronze medal!  The fact that Dubai College won the silver and Al Khubairat the gold became something of a haze as pupils, staff and parents realised what a great achievement this was for a secondary school of our size – both Dubai and Al Khubairat are over 1500 pupils strong.

The whole team, resources and staff coaches deserve a huge amount of credit for all their hard work over the preceding months.  A huge well done to all of them – we are really proud of you all.


5. Irene Tsakos

3. Konstantinos Kakaletris

7. Estella Zacharias

1. Viktor Grigorakis

1. Anna Bougos

2. Atticus Jaikanth-Ryan

6. Anna Wantenaar

4. Stefanos Lamaris

3. Kalypso Panagiotou

6. Stavros Vasileiou

4. Elizabeth Tsakos

5. Grigoris Skazas

2. Emily Maker-Stroubou

7. Alexis Valsamis



Mara De Meis

Michael Strachan

Katie Cronin

Manos Theofanous



Miss Eaton

Mr Soumilas

Mr Moustakas

Thanks are also due to:

Mr Grannon

Mr Latanis

Miss Kennedy

Mr Drimonakis


Stuart Smith