Monash to Play for First Ever Unigames League of Legends Gold

James Wong

The rapidly growing field of eSports will make its Australian University Games debut in 2016 when Monash University play Queensland University of Technology in the final of the Oceania University League of Legends Championship.

Monash won through to the Grand Final by beating the University of Western Australia in a playoff, after making their way through a field of university teams from Australia and New Zealand.

The Monash University 2016 LOL team, from L-R: Tim Jie, Eric Lee, Evan Mascarenhas, William Huang,
Jordan Sturgess & Morgan Khuu

Monash Team Manager Eric Lee said the team are excited about the chance to be the first AUG League of Legends champions.

“We’re extremely excited for the Grand Final of AUG. We’re working really hard and practicing as much as possible before the final stage so we can bring this trophy home.”

League of Legends and other eSports are on the rise. Major tournaments draw millions of viewers worldwide, and prize money for the best players can be in the millions of dollars.

League of Legends is a ‘multiplayer online battle arena’ or ‘MOBA’ game, where two teams of five compete to be the first to destroy the other team’s base, known as a Nexus.  

The players control characters called champions that each have unique abilities. The champions start out the game weak and get stronger as the players defeat enemies or complete objectives.

The game takes place on a map with top, middle and bottom lanes that players travel through. There are also ‘jungle’ areas where players can find the enemies they need to defeat in order to gain the gold and experience necessary to make their champions stronger.

Winning requires the players to work as a team and play to the strengths of their champions; and it can take players hundreds of hours to master the strategies and skills needed to succeed.

Lee said that while in other sports, physical skills and technique are key, in League of Legends, the best players need to master strategy and have an in-depth knowledge of the game.  

“In League of Legends we practise a lot of strategy, we study a lot, we watch other teams and players to improve.

“There are over 100 different champions you can play and every player needs to study up on each champion to know their strengths, weaknesses and capabilities. We spend a lot of time practising, learning and studying."

“The really good players play thousands of hours more than the average player, but it's not just that. To actually be a really good player you have to constantly study and look for areas to improve and try to fix your weaknesses.”

The current line-up of the Monash team has been playing together for four months and Lee said the team dynamic will be key to their chances at AUG.

“It’s rare for a League of Legends team to come together and have such a great natural team dynamic.

“Every player in our team is a vital piece in the puzzle and through competing in AUG we have only gotten stronger.

“These are some of the best players in Oceania and some of the most hard working and dedicated people I have met, and I only expect them to get better.”

Monash will face QUT on Thursday night at 6pm in Perth. Get down and support the team as they try to bring home the gold for Monash!

Monash Alumni Preparing to Run India!

Monash alumni, Samantha Gash, is preparing to undertake an incredible journey. On August 22nd Sam will begin a 3800km run across India!  Over a 76-day span Sam will average 50km per day as she crosses the country in an effort to raise funds for children’s education. She will be running more than a marathon a day…

Sam has already made history by becoming the first woman and the youngest person ever to complete the Grand Slam. The ‘4 Deserts Grand Slam’ requires competitors’ to run four, 250km ultra marathons across the driest (Chile), windiest (China), hottest (Sahara) and coldest deserts (Antarctica) on earth. When all four races are completed in one calendar year, it is regarded as one of the toughest endurance events on the planet.

Then in 2014 Sam ran 55 marathons in 32 days, running for 13 hours a day everyday. Run India is her next attempt at pushing her physical and mental limits.

Sam completed a Bachelor of Performing Arts / Bachelor of Laws double degree and a Bachelor of Performing Arts (Hons) at Monash University and was in the Monash University Elite Athlete Program from 2010-2012.

To support Sam’s efforts during her Run across India, World Vision Australia has designed a challenge where other runners/walkers can set up teams and track their progress against Sam’s.  

Follow the link below to read more about Sam’s run and how you can get involved:

Monash student selected to represent Australia at the World University Orienteering Championships

Monash University Physiotherapy student, Brodie Nankervis, has been selected to represent Australia at the 2016 World University Orienteering Championships.

The World University Orienteering Championships will take place from the 30th of July until the 4th of August in Miskolc, Hungary.

Brodie will be one of five Orienteers representing Australia in the Men's division. Brodie has represented Australia on numerous occasions. As of June 2015 he was ranked 112th in the World for Sprint Orienteering.

Brodie has been a member of Monash University's Elite Athlete Program since 2013, and has represented Monash University at the last four consecutive Australian University Orienteering Championships. The Gold Medal has agonisingly alluded Brodie in all attempts, he finished in second place in 2013, 2015 and 2016.

Learn more about Brodie in his Elite Athlete Profile below:

Elite Student Athlete Profile: Brodie Nankervis

Sport: Orienteering
Faculty: Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
Degree: Bachelor of Physiotherapy
Proudest sporting achievement to date: Three top 20 places at the Junior World Orienteering Championships in Bulgaria in 2014.
Ambitions: To achieve top 20 at the World Orienteering Championships
When did you start competing? 2008
What got you started competing? Development program with the Tasmanian Institute of Sport
Who was your favourite athlete growing up? Steve Moneghetti
Would you prefer to be the underdog or the favourite? Underdog
Before a competition I always... Tie my shoelaces at least twice
When I’m not at uni, competing or training I am... Travelling the world

To find out more about the FISU World University Orienteering Championships, check out the Championships Website.

Congrats Brodie and good luck in Hungary! #MonashPride #WeAreMonash

2016 SUG Success

The 2016 Southern University Games were a huge success for Monash. Monash entered teams in 7 sports, and won 5 Overall Pennants. We dominated the Cross Country, Table Tennis and Squash events, winning Golds and the Overall Team Pennants in all.

2016 saw history being made, with the first e-sport event being held at a University Games competition. Monash University are very proud to be the inaugural Southern University Games League of Legends Champions! The Monash University team had to battle it out against 8 other teams from Monash just to represent us at the competition. The fierce competition within Monash itself and the team's preparation paid off though as we won the Overall Championship. Winning SUG means that the Monash team are now into the Nationals. A great feat!

Cross Country Gold Medallist Toby O'Brien
We had amazing results in the Individual Cross Country event, with our athletics Team Organiser Toby O'Brien winning Gold for the second consecutive year.

Monash students finished 1st, 2nd, & 4th in the Men's Individual Race, and 2nd & 3rd in the Women's Individual Race.

In the Cross Country relays the Monash Men's team finished first by over six and a half minutes.

More extraordinary, in the Women's relay Monash teams finished 1st and 2nd. The two Monash teams battled it out to see who would finish first and ended up finishing just 43 seconds apart after running for over 50 minutes.

The 2016 SUG Monash Cross Country Team - Men's and Women's Overall Champions

Table Tennis Gold Medallist Sam Lim
Monash University was crowned Overall Table Tennis Champions. Our amazing team result showed the depth of our squad.

Incredible individual performances were also seen in our team. Two Monash students competed in the Semi Finals, unfortunately against each other.

Scott Gilmour went into the match undefeated whilst Sam Lim had been beaten only once by another Monash student on his way to the Semi's. Sam ended up winning the Semi in a tight 5 setter.

Sam went on to win his Grand Final match and took home the Gold Medal, and Scott won his Bronze Medal match.

The 2016 SUG Monash Table Tennis Team - Overall Champions

The Men's Squash Championship was also taken out by Monash University, after fantastic team and individual performances.

Harshil Singh won the Gold Medal Match and went through the whole competition undefeated.

Team Organiser Nicholas Gibbs also won the Bronze Medal.

The 2016 SUG Monash Squash Team - Overall Champions

Congratulations to RMIT on the overall win, and to Victoria University for hosting the games.

Fantastic results all around. Great job Team!

Monash University's Talented Student Performer Welcome Dinner

The 2016 Team MONASH Elite Student Performer Dinner was a resounding success. The dinner was held to welcome the 233 talented students in Monash University’s Elite Student Performer Scheme.

The program aids talented students from disciplines including sport, e-sport, art, and music. The event recognised the outstanding achievements of these students, as well as gave them the opportunity to share their experiences with their peers and those who have gone before them.

"The 2016 Welcome event was such a success as our Elite Student performers mingled with Faculty contacts and University Sport Hall of Famers in a relaxed convivial environment," said Team MONASH Director Martin Doulton. "It is a very rare opportunity for our students to both share their various experiences with their peers and to be able to learn directly from those that have successfully combined tertiary study, sporting excellence and business success."

Three of Monash University's illustrious Alumni and Sport Hall of Fame Inductee's joined faculty staff members and over fifty of our current talented students at the dinner.

Spread amongst the students, these Monash alumni and sports men and women provided insight and guidance from their own experiences.

In attendance was victorious America's Cup Skipper and current President of Swimming Australia, John Bertrand (BEng(Hons) 1970); Australian Softballer and current Director at Marshall White, Kate Strickland (BComn 2003); and Australian Test Cricketer and current CEO of Cricket Victoria, Tony Dodemaide.

We would like to thank our Hall of Famers for sharing their experiences and wisdom. Having combined tertiary study and elite sport themselves so expertly their insights are invaluable.

The night was capped off by an incredible speech from the Dean of Law, Professor Bryan Horrigan. Professor Horrigan spoke passionately about the values an athlete needs to succeed in sport. That being an athlete takes more than just physique.

“The Elite Student Performer Scheme represents the fourth pillar of the kind of ‘elite performer’ intelligence you need and get from the Monash Elite Performer Scheme. It joins the other three pillars (different kinds of intelligence) offered by Monash University – Book-Smarts, Street-Smarts, People-Smarts, and Body-Smarts. Unity and integration of heart, mind, soul/spirit, and physique, and never physique alone, as any elite performer can tell you.”

As an athlete himself, he made light of the commonalities that top-class academics and elite athletes shared, in the hours of dedication and hard work that success in both fields requires. Professor Horrigan’s speech was insightful, humorous, and inspiring. According to everyone in attendance, it was the highlight of the night, thank you Bryan!

Monash University Law Students at EuroMilano 2016!

Sport brings people from all over the world together
From the 28th to the 30th of April a group of 22 Monash Law students currently studying at the Monash Prato Centre with the Prato International Law program took part in the 16th World Inter Universities Tournament in Milan: EuroMilano 2016. 

EuroMilano 2016

Over the three days the students participated in the 16th edition of EuroMilano

They played tennis, basketball, volleyball, beach volleyball, and futsal with 700 university students from different European countries including England, Belgium, France, Spain, Germany, Bulgaria, Switzerland, Croatia. 

The Monash students were proudly sponsored by the Monash Prato Centre and TeamMONASH to encourage sporting activity and inter-cultural exchange among students.

"EuroMilano 2016 was a wonderful opportunity for our students to consume a wonderful cultural experience," said Team MONASH Director Martin Doulton. “Sport was the social glue that brought people of many different backgrounds together in a unique student event. Through the strong collaboration of Monash Prato, The Faculty of Law and Team MONASH this inaugural representation of Monash University at this major European student sporting event was a great success and plans are already being laid for our students to attend next year’s event." 

Student testimonials from EuroMilano:
"The opportunity to meet students from other countries was invaluable and all the universities were super friendly and worlds of fun. I think there is not enough that can be said for the power of sport to bring people together, especially from different backgrounds, and of different native languages. Sport is common ground no matter the differences."

Matthew Molloy - Basketball team

"I would do EuroMilano again in a heartbeat. Looking back on the weekend it was a great way not only to bond with my fellow Prato peers but, also, to meet people from all over Europe."
Emma Briggs - Volleyball team

Monash University & The Oaktree Foundation

Congratulations to everyone who took part in the recent reactivation of the Monash University-Oaktree Partnership.

The past two months saw over 800 people participate in Limbo Below the Line and approximately $50,000 raised at the Live Below the Line campaign to help end poverty. 

Monash University and Oaktree share their value of youth empowerment and making positive change in the world.

We have in the past months revitalised this partnership through the Limbo Below the Line world record attempt and participation in the Live Below the Line campaign.

On April 20th over 800 students at Monash University's Clayton Campus limboed under a pole set at just one metre. With the aim of raising awareness for extreme poverty and the upcoming Live Below the Line campaign. 

The Limbo event acted as a catalyst for the Live Below the Line campaign on May 2nd-6th. Throughout the campaign over 150 Monash students lived on just $2 a day. In the process raising approximately $50,000 to help end poverty.

Monash Residential Services (MRS) as a cohort raised $12,000, with Farrer Hall winning the College Cup after raising $3,624 themselves. 

It was fantastic to see the cooperation of all in raising funds and awareness for the alleviation of poverty.  

This important partnership will continue to grow in the future as we strive to provide Monash students with an outlet to help alleviate extreme poverty. 

Dual Triple Jump Success for Monash University at Nationals!

The two best triple jumpers in Oceania are Monash University students! The Australian National Track and Field Championships were held this month in Sydney, with some outstanding results.

Nneka Okpala

Nneka Okpala won the Australian National Triple Jump Championship in resounding form with a jump of 13.91m.

Nneka graduated from Monash University with a Masters of International Health at the end of last year and was our 2015 Female Athlete of the Year.

She is the New Zealand National Record Holder and is ranked 10th in the world currently.

With her sights set firmly on a Rio 2016 Olympic qualifier, this championship was a great step. 

Meggan O'Riley
Current Bachelor of Nutrition Science student Meggan O'Riley also had an amazing tournament.

Meggan took out the Australian Women's National Triple Jump Title, after finishing second behind the New Zealand national Nneka.

Meggan's jump of 13.42m ranks her fifth in the All Time Australian Rankings, and 35th in the world currently.

Congratulations to both athletes on their incredible success! #MonashPride

Monash University's Hockey tour of Vanuatu

Ten athletes from Monash University men’s and women’s Inter Varsity hockey team visited Vanuatu from the 19th to the 29th of February this year. The touring party of ten consisted of athletes with high levels of coaching, playing and varsity experience and included Australian Indoor Hockey representative Thomas Sinclair.
The aim of the tour was to provide coaching assistance and support for Hockey Vanuatu, deliver competition for Vanuatu’s national side as well as bring equipment for donation and use by the hockey community.  

On the first Saturday of the tour, Monash participated in a local round robin tournament.  The matches were 30 minutes in duration and were played with five a side. The local teams were from villages across Efate and included sides such as Havannah and Mele. Games were high scoring and included a 7 all draw between Monash and Hanvannah.
The locals coped better with the fives format as well as the 35 degree heat coupled with 95% humidity. Following the completion of the earliest matches, Monash were officially welcomed by the President of the Vanuatu Hocket Association, Relvie Poilapa. In her address to the hockey community, Poilapa officially opened the 2016 season.  Following this speech, Monash team manager, Charles Norbury, presented the 26 bags of equipment donated by the hockey community in Melbourne to Poilapa.
Monday 22nd saw Monash win a high scoring affair against Vanuatu’s national side.  The 60 minute, 7 on 7 game finished with an end score of 9-7. The skill and flair of Vanuatu’s national side was evident.
With cyclone warnings in place across Vanuatu, Tuesday’s scheduled game against Vanuatu was cancelled. Instead, Monash ran a Pikinini clinic at the Wan Smolbag Youth Centre for the underprivileged children that attend the centre each day.
On Wednesday evening, Monash attended the hockey Vanuatu trivia night. This event marked the opening of the 2016 season and raised money for the hockey program. 
On Thursday, Monash coached a Pikinini clinic in Havannah on a grass pitch at the local primary school. The clinic consisted of an eight a side match with local children and Monash students on both sides. As more of the locals filtered in the numbers on each side grew.  Small games broke out on different parts of the grass field in competition to the larger match.
The game was conducted on a grass pitch that was not level, littered with gravel and rocks, and had tree roots and other obstacles.  Remarkably the majority of those playing did not wear closed shoes and were either in flip flops or bare foot. The game was simple with the only rule being ‘leg’ which was shouted whenever someone was hit below the knee by the ball. The session went for over an hour and half with more kids and adults arriving as the sun gradually set for another day. For the students this was the high point of the trip.
Over the course of the ten days the team of Monash students successfully competed in five matches and ran two clinics. They also donated over 100 hockey sticks, 80 sports bras, 8 dozen balls, and numerous uniforms. Aside from the interruptions caused by the cyclone threat, the program went exceptionally well and the group was gratified by the hospitality of the Nevan people. This Vanuatu trip is an example of some of the great opportunities that Monash University provides for its students to become world citizens.

Check out our latest facebook event photo album: