Our high performance athletes

Find out more about the University of Auckland high performance athletes and the range of activities they compete in.

Abbie Palmer
Alice Boyd
Alice Tilley
Aniket Parikh
Ben Waller
Coral Huang
Deborah Yin
Dylan Schmidt
Eleanor Adviento
Elise Salt
Elizabeth Lamb
Eliza McCartney
Ellie Copeland
Eunice Ng
George Anyon
George Muir
Hannah Coombridge
Helen Murray
Jack Adams
James Thwaite
Jamie Banhidi
Josh Stove
Katie Duncan
Kim Thompson
Matthew Goodall
Michaela Sokolich
Nicco Tagle
Olivia Mackay
Pippa Hayward
Roisin Giles
Sione Molia
Stacey Michelsen
Tam Lindsay
Taylor Sheehan
Theresa Fitzpatrick
Tommy Hayes
William McKenzie

Orienteerers en route to Switzerland

24 June 2016
Alice Tilley
Alice Tilley

Several University of Auckland students have their sights set to compete on the international stage for orienteering during July.

From 9 to 15 July, seven University of Auckland students will head overseas to Engadin, Switzerland to compete for the Junior World Orienteering title.

The team will depart New Zealand on Monday 27 June and will commence training in the first week of July.

The students that will represent New Zealand are Engineering students Matthew Goodall, Jonty Oram, Cameron de’ Isle and Kayla Fairbairn, as well as Tommy Hayes (Science), Alice Tilley (Arts) and Devon Beckham (Commerce).

Many of the students are familiar with the international competitions. For Alice and Kayla (both 18 years of age), this will be their third Junior World Orienteering Championships, after competing in the event for the last two years in Bulgaria and Norway respectively.

First-year Arts student, Alice, says the demands of both orienteering and University life can be difficult with such limited time.

“At times it can be hard to balance both workload and training load especially with the Championships just around the corner from exams, but prioritising is always key,” she says.

When asked about how it felt to earn the opportunity to represent her country in Switzerland, Kayla stressed how great an occasion it is to be selected in the New Zealand team for the third consecutive year.

“It is an amazing opportunity to race against around 50 countries in the mountains of Switzerland, representing New Zealand and the University. It will be incredible experience,” she says.

Alice, Kayla, Matthew, Jonty, Cameron, Tommy and Devon are all supported by the High Performance Student Support Programme and the Sport Support Fund. For more information on the upcoming event, check out the Junior Orienteering World Championships website.

Our students' events

London calling for ultimate athletes

17 June 2016
The University's New Zealand ultimate team representatives (from left): Eunice Ng, Hannah Coombridge, Riah Mildenhall and Ben Waller.

Four University of Auckland medical students are set to compete on the international stage on the other side of the world.

Eunice Ng, Hannah Coombridge, Riah Mildenhall and Ben Waller will represent New Zealand at the World Ultimate [Frisbee] Championships in London, which start this weekend.

It’s not the first time any of the students have represented New Zealand at a world championships in ultimate, albeit at a junior level. Eunice and Ben have played in the under-19 team; Hannah has played in the under-23 team and Riah’s played for both.

Third-year student, Eunice, says preparing for such a major tournament when it’s the off-season in New Zealand has been challenging.

“You have to be really determined because the season has finished – there are no club trainings. It’s been a lot of individual work like getting up when it’s still dark to go for a run, or trying to meet up with other Auckland-based teammates to practice.”

Competing against 26 (women) and 32 (open mixed) teams in the week-long tournament, the New Zealand contingent had a week’s build-up in London to acclimatise, train as a team, and play practice games against local teams.

“It’s been hard in Auckland to find teams to compete against and we haven’t really played much as a team, so the practice games will really help with our preparation,” says Eunice.

A sport which is growing in popularity, even becoming officially recognised by the International Olympic Committee recently, differs from traditional sports by being self-refereed.

“Spirit is a huge thing in the sport. There are lots of different categories you mark the opposition in – knowledge of the rules, communication, positive attitude and more,” says Eunice.

The tournament is timely for the students, with Riah taking up an opportunity to intern at a hospital in England directly after it finishes, highlighting the commitment the students are making to balancing their sport and studies.

“I’ve had to miss a test, which I’ll get aegrotat consideration for,” says Eunice. “Ben has sorted out his commitments and Hannah has taken her whole holiday allocation from her placement in order to compete.”

Eunice, Hannah, Riah and Ben are supported by the High Performance Student Support Programme and the Sport Support Fund. Two of New Zealand’s games will be live streamed online – check out details on the New Zealand Ultimate website