Water Polo ladies hope to win league cup once again.
THE WITS ladies’ are hoping to defend their title at the Central Gauteng Water Polo League which begun this past weekend.
The team made it to the semi-finals of the University Sports South Africa (USSA) where they lost, 11-2, to Stellenbosch University (Maties) team on Sunday, October 8. Despite the loss, the team’s chairlady, Caitlyn O’Shaughnessy, says that they are proud of their performance.
“We were really happy with how we placed at the USSA championships this year as we haven’t had a USSA tournament for the past two years because of the fees must fall protests. We also had very little training and practices before the tournament. Tuks also pulled out just before the tournament which gave us a chance at placing higher than we have before.
We then played Nelson Mandela University (NMU) for 3rd and 4th place. We came from two goals down to take the lead but the game ended in a draw and went on to a penalty shoot-out which we sadly lost 2-1 thus leaving us in 4th place,” says O’Shaughnessy.
The men’s water polo team also participated in the USSA games this past weekend where they were placed 10th out of the 14 teams and fourth in the overall USSA men’s rankings.
Matthew van Rooyen, vice-chairman of the Wits Water Polo, said that the team’s performance this year has been an improvement on their results from 2016 despite some challenges.
“The team began the year in the premier men’s water polo division in Gauteng for the first time after receiving promotion at the end of last year. The team endured a difficult season playing against the top club sides in Gauteng. It was still a fantastic achievement for us as a team having never played in the top tier before,” van Rooyen says.
He attributes the men’s team’s improvement this year to the addition of new players and the appointment of a new men’s coach, Ryan van Rensburg, who is also the water polo coach at King Edward VII School.
“The team is going from strength to strength and we are optimistic of a high placing at the end of the league in March next year. We are looking to build on the performances during the season taking place over the next few months,” van Rooyen says.
O’Shaughnessy acknowledges the team’s challenges saying that, “We have had a very up and down year with the club but we have settled.
“We also hope to recruit more players in who are currently in matric to join our club so we can make water polo a popular and enjoyable sport that people will carry on playing at university level.”
The water polo club also hopes to host a development clinic in January to raise funds for the club and inspire children who would like to pursue the sport.
Wits Vuvuzela, http://witsvuvuzela.com/2017/03/17/top-performers-celebrated-at-sports-awards/, March 17, 2017
Wits Vuvuzela, http://witsvuvuzela.com/2017/08/05/lack-of-funds-threaten-sport-clubs/, August 05, 2017