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Girls' U16 Inter Regionals Water Polo 2019

Division 1 and 2 of the U16 Girls Inter-Regional Championships took place on 6 & 7 July 2019.

Division 1 at Palatine Leisure Centre was hosted by North West region and Division 2 at Walsall Gala Baths was hosted by West Midland region.

Division One


The South West girls battled really hard but unfortunately lost all four matches. It was nice to see the improvement with every game they played. The team was young with only one 15-year-old player. Over half the team were born in 2005 and so will be back playing U16s again next year.

Congratulations to Sofia Fountain who was awarded MVP. Thanks to Jim and Hannah who gave up their valuable time to coach the girls when neither of them had children competing. A big thank you to Chris Tubby of Cheltenham, who was selected as the South West's Referee for the tournament.

North West Thunder beat North East Steelers in a thrilling finale to win the U16 Girls Division One title. All three podium places were undecided until the final two games at Palatine Leisure Centre, with Steelers in first place on six points, a point ahead of Thunder. The two teams met in the final game of the tournament, with Thunder winning 14-12 to claim their second consecutive Inter-Regional trophy, having won the U14 Girls’ crown in 2017.

The showpiece was a rematch of that final two years ago and Thunder coach Lauren Tasker credited her team for recovering from their opening draw with London. She said: “The girls thoroughly deserved their victory this weekend. They listened to and performed the tactics they’d learnt in training and it was amazing to watch them work together as a team and having each other’s backs. We knew the competition was going to be tough and that during each game, we needed to stay completely focused right to the end. 

“Following a shaky start to the tournament, the girls kept their heads up and never stopped fighting for each other. Every single player showed great passion and the talent coming through the North West programmes is incredible. I’m extremely proud of them all. Overall, it was a fantastic experience for the girls and a very well organised event, so I would like to pass on a big thank you on behalf of the North West team to everyone involved.”

Fixtures & Results
North West Thunder 5 – 5 London FT
South West 9 – 29 North East Steelers FT
North West Thunder 11 – 8 South East Anderida FT
London 11 – 19 North East Steelers FT
South West 6 – 18 South East Anderida FT
London 12 – 2 South West FT
North East Steelers 15 – 5 South East Anderida FT
North West Thunder 19 – 6 South West FT
London 4 – 8 South East Anderida FT
North West Thunder 14 – 12 North East Steelers FT


League Table
Team P W D L GD Pts
North West Thunder 4 3 1 0 18 7
North East Steelers 4 3 0 1 36 6
South East Anderida 4 2 0 2 3 4
London 4 1 1 2 -2 3
South West 4 0 0 4 -55 0

Division Two

Ireland produced a flawless tournament to win the U16 Girls Division Two title. The competition was played under the new FINA water polo rules for 2019-2021.

Head coach Goran Sablic said: “Prior to the tournament, the Irish girls had attended a seminar in Dublin on the new FINA rules. They were nervous going into the competition, as they were worried about giving away penalties or major fouls. The technical meeting before the tournament began was a useful refresher for the coaching team and referees.

“We wanted to try a few new drills using the new rules in the competition. We played the goalie as a seventh outfield player and the goalkeeper was able to take a penalty. It was good to get all the players on the scoresheet. The new rules sped up the play, enabling us to score 10-18 goals in every match, over just two periods of play.”

After the crushing opening loss to Ireland, East Midlands went through the rest of the competition unbeaten. They conceded just five goals en route to winning their five remaining games, scoring 51 goals in total throughout the weekend to finish second.

North West Lightning took home third place, winning three and drawing one of their six matches.

Fixtures & Results
West Midlands 7 – 7 North West Lightning FT
East Angels 7 – 7 Scotland Saltires FT
Ireland 10 – 3 East Midlands FT
North West Lightning 15 – 4 South East Solent FT
East Midlands 9 – 1 East Angels FT
Scotland Saltires 5 – 8 West Midlands FT
Ireland 17 – 3 North West Lightning FT
East Angels 14 – 5 South East Solent FT
East Midlands 10 – 1 Scotland Saltires FT
East Angels 8 – 13 North West Lightning FT
Ireland 18 – 0 Scotland Saltires FT
West Midlands 10 – 4 South East Solent FT
Ireland 15 – 3 West Midlands FT
East Midlands 11 – 0 South East Solent FT
Scotland Saltires 6 – 7 North West Lightning FT
West Midlands 2 – 6 East Angels FT
South East Solent 3 – 15 Ireland FT
North West Lightning 3 – 10 East Midlands FT
East Angels 3 – 13 Ireland FT
South East Solent 7 – 8 Scotland Saltires FT
West Midlands 2 – 8 East Midlands FT


League Table
Team P W D L GD Pts
Ireland 6 6 0 0 73 12
East Midlands 6 5 0 1 34 10
North West Lightning 6 3 1 2 -4 7
East Angels 6 2 1 3 -10 5
West Midlands 6 2 1 3 -13 5
Scotland Saltires 6 1 1 4 -30 3
South East Solent 6 0 0 6 -50 0



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