CSWPC Water Polo Teams the last 30 Days
British National League
Thousands of water polo fans from around the world tuned in to watch the drama unfold at the British National League Super 5’s finals in Lancaster. Watching either live TV or via the BBC iPlayer online this was brilliant coverage of the best of the best playing quality water polo. CSWPC’s first mens team were in action both days. First they took on the home side Lancaster. With a convincing win for CSWPC praise was given to the teams youngsters Charlie Brogan (17) and Tom Hunt (18) who both scored multiple goals. The final score was 10-5 to Cheltenham. On the Sunday there was a brilliant battle between CSWPC and Invincta. Invicta just took the lead final score 10-9 to Invincta meaning Cheltenham ended up in 3rd place in the table. CSWPC’s Tom Hunt came joint second highest goal scorer for the season an amazing achievement for such a young player.
If you haven’t seen any of the matches they are still available on iPlayer until the end of April.
A weekend in Northampton faced the young National League side trying to keep their place in Division 3 for the coming year. Three new teams Watford, Exeter & Nova Centurion were battling three existing teams for the limited spots. CSWPC needed 3 wins to qualify comfortably. Ideally one of those would have come from the first match against Watford but unfortunately it didn’t. Manchester were definitely the dominant team and although a few of their key players had left by the time CSWPC faced them they were not weakened enough for Cheltenham to take a win. The ladies had 2 comfortable wins over Sunderland and Nova Centurion leaving it all down to the last match against Exeter. An early lead made this seem more achievable but being half matches (2×7 mins) there just didn’t seem enough time to take advantage. Final score was 6-2 to Exeter. CSWPC were one of the few teams who were mainly under 18’s and didn’t have GB stars in their midst. It is a real shame they didn’t qualify this year but hopefully another 12 months of training will strengthen the team and give a change of fortune for 2020/2021.
Midland League U18’s
The end of March saw the final game in the Midland Water Polo Junior Men’s League. The league for under 18 year old boys enables a transition period before mens polo for 16-18 year olds.
CSWPC finished off in second place behind Warley. The boys had a really good season with a very young side – only 4 of a total squad of 26 were actually in this age-group. CSWPC dominated most teams throughout, scoring literally twice as many goals as any other team over the course of the season. Unfortunately, due to a combination of events and calls upon several of our players by the national squads, we eventually lost two games (Northampton & Warley) due to having to travel with a lot of the team not being available. Coach Martyn Thomas said “I am really pleased with the result as the aim of entering this league is to bring on young players and we have certainly done this. The development of our younger players has been remarkable and I would like to congratulate, Luke Tubby, Taylor Walsh, Morgan Wells, Xander Mckie, Will Cook, Will Maddocks and James Willis on their promotion and first games for the Mens Spartan’s Team in the British League”.
The team has been captained in an excellent way, throughout the season by Tom Hunt who was also top goal-scorer in the League. Sadly Tom, Ollie Stanley, Jon Ranshaw & Isaac Dunn will now move on from this league. CSWPC thanks you all for your commitment and support over the past few seasons.
Finally Special mention goes to Harry Mason who stepped up and played in goal, despite not really being a ‘keeper’, when Josh Long wasn’t available.
Full Squad were –
Tom Hunt, Jon Ranshaw, Ollie Stanley, Isaac Dunn, Charlie Brogan, Will Cook, Taylor Walsh, William Maddocks, Morgan Wells, Kyle Yeates, Xander Mckie, James Willis, Luke Tubby, Josh Long, Zak Long and Harry Mason.
4 GB Call Ups
CSWPC has had 4 of their players called to take part in GB training and competitions this year. Well done to –
Amy Berry U17’s Girls GB Squad
Charlie Brogan U17’s Boys GB Squad
Tom Hunt & Oliver Stanley U19’s Mens GB Squad.
This month the U17’s GB girls went to EU Nations in Brno, Czech Republic. Part of their warm up to the European Championships which are in the first week of September in Greece. The squad has been made up from the top players from waterpolo clubs from all around the country. This was their first competition as a group and CSWPC’s own Amy Berry had the honor of being captain. She led the team to three victories in their group matches meaning they faced Germany in the Semi Finals. A tough match, with valuable lessons learned, the squad finished a respectable 3rd earning them the bronze medal. Head Coach Sarah Dunsbee said “The team has had a good weekend and earned a good solid third place.” The squad hope to attend some European camps over the summer to give them quality opposition in preparation for the European Championships which will no doubt have a higher level of experienced competitors attending. Meanwhile Charlie Brogan has just returned from a training camp in Dubrovnik for the GB U17’s Boys team. They take part in the European Championships Qualifiers in May. We look forward to hearing how it went.
National Age Group Finals
An exciting weekend started and finished abruptly at Liverpool Aquatics Centre. The Girls U17’s NAGS team put up a strong fight against Sheffield but to no avail. They face London Otter in the bronze match play off at the rescheduled finals 27th May in Ponds Forge, Sheffield.
The U19’s Girls Plate got off to an exciting start and although 4.2 seconds were still to play CSWPC looked in control and would have taken a win. Unfortunately due to lack of pool time and having to reschedule the whole weekend the Plate competitions have been cancelled for this year.
The U17’s Boys did qualify for the plate but due to a number of players being away at training or on holiday coach John Spicer decided to withdraw.
For a more detailed report see that article.
Bristol & West League
Men (Cheltenham Spartans)
Cheltenham Spartans are in the Premier Division for the Bristol and West League. Their first match was away at Newport. CSWPC dominated the second quarter but Newport came back strong over the following half of the game to eventually take the win. Final score 12-10 to Newport. Next up was Exeter away. CSWPC fielded only 8 players but created a good lead in the first quarter and held their own right to the end. A good 14-12 win to CSWPC. Spartans currently sit 4th in the table but there are still a lot of matches to go. Wishing the team the best of luck in 2019.