Watford Water Polo 1st team claim place in BWPL Championship One

The 1st team qualify for BWPL Championship One for the second half of season after a tense final game against West London Penguins on Sunday morning at Habs School.

At the start of the weekend the team needed one win from the two games & with games against London League Premier Division rivals Sutton & Cheam & West London Penguins both games were going to be tense affairs.

Saturday’s game against Sutton started so well as the team took a 1st qtr lead at 3-0 thanks to goals from Ciaran Walshe, Andy Holt & James Warman.

Unfortunately the team couldn’t build on this excellent start as Sutton stopped Watford scoring in the second period and scored one themselves for a HT score of 3-1.

Into the 3rd period & Sutton continued to control the game as they won the quarter 3-0 to turn the game on its head in their favour as they now lead 4-3. The final period and again Sutton & ex-GB & London 2012 Olympian controlled the game as a 2-1 quarter in their favour won them the match 6-4. Final goal for watford came via James Warman.

Team v WL Penguins: Peter P (GK), Danny Davis, Wayne Davis, Andy Holt, Sam Carling, Nandi Cesh, Ciaran Walshe, Jared Baker, Jack Pickford, James Warman, Luke Rogers, Cami Baker, Steve Behr.

So Sunday morning and the team couldn’t affort to lose if they were going to acheive the clubs aim of making Championship One.

The game started with penguin taking a 1st qtr lead at 3-1. A goal by James Warman had briefly levelled the game at 1-1.

The second period started with Watford pulling level at 3-3 & then 4-3 up thanks to goals from Ciaran Walshe, Jack Pickford & Jared Baker. Penguin hit back to level at 4-4 and HT came all square.

The 3rd period was a strange quarter with only one goal scored which Penguins claimed for a slender 5-4 lead.

The final period and penguin increased their lead to two at 6-4 after only 45 secs. But two minutes later Steven Behr had us back within one with a tap in after the ball dropped down off the bar (6-5). Penguin then scored again only for Watford to reply via Andy Holt for 7-6 back came Penguin and a goal from their Italian forward Bagnoli from 5m had the london side two clear again at 8-6.

With 2.36 to play Sam Carling was feed the ball in the pit a quick turn and lob over the advancing Penguin keeper had us back within one at 8-7. Next attack and Penguin win a man-up and call a time out they work the ball round to their 2m man and a super save from GB goalie Peter Pickford kept us in the game. With possession back coach Edi Brkovic calls time out. Watford work a move and earn man-up from the extra player we score via Walshe from close range 8-8.

56 seconds remain penguin attack force a man-up but critically miss a chance to score. We steal possession and call time out with 28 secs remaining. Edi instructs team to work a second centre into the attack but more importantly don’t lost possession we hold on to the ball and time runs out an 8-8 draw would that be enough only time would tell.

Team v Sutton: Peter P (GK), Danny Davis, Wayne Davis, Andy Holt, Sam Carling, Nandi Cesh, Ciaran Walshe, Jared Baker, Jack Pickford, James Warman, Paul Skerm, Cami Baker, Steve Behr.

With Sutton losing their next game and Welsh Wanderers losing to Exeter it was and we finish phase one in fifth spot snd promotion to championship one for second half of sesson.