Sue Seagroatt shares the good things that were happening with the Hillingdon Penguin water polo juniors before the coronavirus COVID-19 lockdown, as a reminder of the training sessions that we are all missing so much…
Our final training session was on Saturday 14 March. Sensing this might be our last for a while, the coaches abandoned their lesson plans and put on a spontaneous Fun Tournament. But ahead of that there was a special presentation of a Jack Petchey Leader Award.
Jack Petchey Leader Award
Adam Maidment’s passion and dedication to coaching water polo has been recognised by our young water polo players, who put him forward for a Jack Petchey Leader Award. We are thrilled that he won it, and the award was presented by three of our players, Charlie Richardson, Dan Murphy and Anderson Jolly, from the Advanced Group which Adam coaches.
Adam’s coaching achievements
Adam has been coaching the Hillingdon Penguin Advanced Group for the past three years. He started almost by accident at a training session in April 2017, when two of our coaches unexpectedly failed to turn up. Adam stepped forward and things went from there. His initiative and willingness were admirable and it soon became evident that he had the makings of a good coach. Since then Adam’s insistence on good discipline and fitness has transformed this group of players. Adam plans his sessions meticulously, constantly adding new ideas to keep them interesting. He also likes to spring random beep tests, which have the double benefit of demonstrating the upward progress of the groups’ fitness statistics.
In June 2017 Adam received a Jack Petchey Achievement Award (for young people). At that time he spoke of his aspiration to complete a water polo coaching course. He’s had to wait a while for Swim England to schedule some courses, but at last his ambition was realised when he attended the Level 1 Coaching Water Polo course in July 2019 followed by Level 2 in February 2020, both tutored by Tim Kendall.
You’ll know from previous posts that Adam has also been enjoying the responsibility of coaching the Hillingdon Penguin Under-16 team. This means that he is obliged to referee games at London Water Polo League U16 Division 3 tournaments, which he has been doing with advice and support from Chris Martin. Adam’s current ambition is to attend a refereeing course.
Thank you for all you do Adam!
Michelangelo Tritto gains Assistant Water Polo Coach qualification
Another of our young Hillingdon Penguin coaches, Mickey, also completed a Level 1 coaching course delivered in mid-March by Simon Wooley. Mickey thanked the Club for organising his participation: ‘The course was a great experience, which will hopefully show next year’.
James Warrener, London Swimming Regional Development Officer, was instrumental in helping us secure bursaries towards the cost of Adam’s Level 2 and Mickey’s Level 1 qualifications. James explained, ‘The region are happy we can support our coaches which will then help clubs grow.’
As I mentioned earlier, when we sensed that our session on 14 March might be our last for a a while, we made it into a Fun Tournament (more usually happening at the end of each term). With an attendance of 56 we divided players into six teams under captains Amber, Anderson, Michael, Mickey, Olly and Will H. As you can see from the team names on the scoreboard, we were already feeling the loss of Premier League football!
Well done ‘Spurs’ who were the winners: Michael, Sophie, Bailey, Sam, Thomas, Thalia, Lize, Charlie and Alex R.
Thanks to Adam for organising and Anton and Adrian for scoring. I hope you enjoy this snippet of action from the tournament, for all of us missing our pool:
Meanwhile two of our enterprising young siblings were brave enough to shake a collection jar at everyone they could find watching the water polo or using the leisure centre that day, and managed to collect £84.79 for Sport Aid. Well done Zoe and Elizabeth!
We are grateful to the Jack Petchey Foundation for their support.