WATER POLO: Grantham club members enjoy busy weekend

Grantham Water Polo Club under-17 boys, from left, back - coach Luke Rees, Ollie Walker, Josh Peters, Will Seage, Adam Smith, Cameron Terry, Tom Cotton, Harry Fowler and Dom Shires; front - Michael Topley, Caleb Mackey, Cameron Chow, Richard Earley and Noah Clegg.
Grantham Water Polo Club under-17 boys, from left, back - coach Luke Rees, Ollie Walker, Josh Peters, Will Seage, Adam Smith, Cameron Terry, Tom Cotton, Harry Fowler and Dom Shires; front - Michael Topley, Caleb Mackey, Cameron Chow, Richard Earley and Noah Clegg.
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Grantham Water Polo Club enjoyed a busy weekend with almost 50 players in action at various pools throughout the region.

On Saturday evening, eight Grantham players (born 2000 or younger) attended the training on offer in Matlock in pursuit of selection for inter-regional tournaments.

Meanwhile, on Sunday the under-17 boys were in action at the National Age Group Championships at Walsall Gala Baths.

It has been some years since Grantham has entered this level of competition and, despite the relative youth of the squad and the need for consistent defensive play, some great waterpolo was seen. Under the guidance of coach Luke Rees, the boys made a tremendous effort against confident opposition and gained very valuable experience.

A win against Cwm Draig 7-3 at the end of a long and tiring day for players and parents alike lifted spirits and the boys now progress to the Plate final in April.

Younger members of the club were involved in the East Midlands Water Polo League at Braunstone in Leicester.

Two squads of 12 Year 7-9 players represented Grantham in the first in a series of tournaments against Hinckley, two Northampton teams and Nottingham Leander, and for a number of Grantham players this was their first experience of matchplay.

Playing in mixed squads allowed the more experienced players to provide guidance to the less confident, demonstrating excellent teamwork and support. Older players Cameron Knott and Rose Bitowt swapped the pool for the poolside and coached a squad each as part of the club’s incentive to promote more mature players diversifying into coaching.