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An Inspiring Futures student athlete and an athletics coach have been announced as finalists at the Leeds Sports Awards 2020.

Gordon Agar at Leeds Trinity University .

Student rugby player Linden Metcalfe and athletics coach Gordon Agar have been shortlisted for awards at the Leeds Sports Awards. Now in its 17th year, the awards will celebrate sporting success across the city and recognise athletes, coaches, volunteers, clubs and organisations for their contributions and achievements in 2019.

19-year-old Linden, from Pontefract, is nominated for the ‘Student Sport’ award following his selection for the Great Britain Pioneers Rugby League squad ahead of their tour in Albania. He is up against other student athletes, as well as Leeds Beckett University’s American Football, University of Leeds Boat Club, and University of Leeds Women’s Rugby Union.

As a contribution towards his trip to Albania, Linden received £500 from the University's Inspiring Futures Programme. He is also part of the University's Talented Athlete Support Package which offers free gym membership, access to the University Strength and Conditioning Suite, tailored Sport Science testing and support, and learning and teaching support for his academic studies.

Linden said: “It's an immense honour to be a finalist at such a highly regarded event, especially with all the great sports people attending. When I received the message that I was a finalist, I was surprised that I had made it as far as I did, as all I’ve done to be shortlisted is enjoy playing rugby league throughout my University experience.”

Leeds Trinity athletics coach Gordon has been shortlisted for the ‘Outstanding Service to Sport’ category, in recognition of his service to athletics for over 50 years as a coach, officiator, and secretary at local, county and national level. The former Head Coach of the UK Sports Association for People with Learning Disability is nominated together with former English professional footballer John Hall, and Pat Childs from Leeds City Athletic Club.

Gordon said: “Some of the young people I coach are becoming leading athletes not just in Leeds, but in West Yorkshire, which is great and very rewarding. But, ultimately, all I want is for young people to enjoy sport, without the distractions of modern-day life and without the pressure of becoming an elite athlete, if they don’t want to. I want them to get outside and have fun.

“It’s nice to look around Leeds and feel a sense of pride that clubs and activities I’ve been involved with are still there. I’ve left a legacy for the city that I’m really proud of.”

Student Chloe Kerrigan is also shortlisted in the Leeds Rhinos Women's Rugby League team in the Club/Team Performance award. Chloe, Linden and Gordon will join Jack Laugher MBE, Joe Root, Josh Warrington, Nicola Adams OBE, Hannah Cockcroft MBE, Kadeena Cox MBE and many other Olympians, Paralympians and elite sportsmen and women at the awards ceremony.

Sarah Todd, Sports Development Manager at Leeds Trinity University, said: “I am thrilled that Linden and Gordon have been shortlisted as finalists at the Leeds Sports Awards. The University supports the awards every year so it’s great to see some of our own shortlisted! Gordon has worked with us for 20 years and without volunteers like him, sport at the University would not be possible. Our students speak so highly of him and his commitment to helping them succeed. Our performance athletes go above and beyond so it’s great to see Linden recognised for his achievements. Both nominees are very deserving winners.”

The 2020 Leeds Sports Awards will take place at Leeds Direct Arena on Thursday 27 February, with more than 700 people expected to attend. Leeds Trinity University is proud to sponsor the Club/Team Performance award.

For more information, please visit the Leeds Sports Awards website.

Categories: Sport, Health and Physical Education

For the media

Leeds Trinity University's Communications Officer, Lucy Chaplin, is the first point of contact for local, national and international media.

Looking to source a comment or would like to arrange an interview with one of our academic experts? Contact Lucy on +44 (0) 113 283 7156 or l.chaplin@leedstrinity.ac.uk