Water Polo Championships

Water Polo Secretary : Neil Green


ESSA Water Polo

The ESSA has been providing an opportunity for all schools in England to actively engage in competitive water polo since 1976. Water polo has become increasingly popular within schools for boys, and now girls since 2003, and there are now a significant number of competitions that reflect this.

Both boys’ and girls’ groups compete at U18, U15 and U13 age groups. The first phase of preliminary competitions is mostly regionalised.
Following this preliminary phase the U18 and U15 age groups split into three levels;
- the ‘Championship’, where the elite schools compete for the national title,
- the ‘Plate’ where the intermediate schools compete for their national title, and
- the ‘Bowl’ where the developing schools compete for their national title.
All schools enter the ‘Championship’ competition in the preliminary phase and it is then hoped that subsequent phases are a ‘standard appropriate’ level of competition for all competing schools. The U13 ‘Championship’ competition for both boys and girls is regionalised during the preliminary phase of competition.
The second phase of this competition takes into consideration the results from the preliminary phase, whilst still providing an opportunity for all competing schools to qualify for the ‘Championship’ final and compete for the national title.

Cadet competitions aim to attract new players into competitive water polo and to retain them. A school cannot enter a Championship team, and also a Cadet team, with the same pupils that have already competed in the Championship competition. There are now two age groups for the Cadet competition – U11 (Year 6 and below) and U13 (Year 8 and below). Teams can be single sex or mixed.

Duke of Cambridge Cup is a one-day tournament for the best 39 boys and best 39 girls, nominated by schools and England Water Polo, from a specific age group (identified as at the start of the academic year by the ESSA Council). To be considered for this competition a pupil must attend School in England.

International honours can be achieved following selection by the ESSA Head Coach, usually at the Duke of Cambridge Cup one-day tournament.
Since 2015 International teams have represented the ESSA at tournaments in Malta, Hungary and in 2018 we welcomed Australia and Romania to England for a Home International tournament.

 ESSA Australian Schools visiting tour 2018 Boys WP Team
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   ESSA Australian Schools visiting tour 2018  Girls WP Team
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ESSA Water Polo 2023/24 Championships and Competitions

Entry information for the 2023/24 championships are now available below.
Please download and complete these forms promptly and email/return the form (s) directly to me at Alleyn’s School by Friday 28th July 2023

ESSA 2023/24 Finals Dates and Venues 

COMPETITION DATE VENUE 2023 ESSA Water Polo Finals
U18 Boys Championship  Friday 22nd March Liverpool Aquatic Centre, 3.30pm-9.00pm (6 teams, 11 Games)
U18 Boys Plate Monday 11th March Eton College, 10.30am – 3.30pm (6 teams, 11 Games)
U18 Boys Bowl Monday 11th March Eton College, 4.00pm-6.00pm (4 teams, 6 Games)
U15 Boys/Mixed Championship Wednesday 13th March Haberdashers’ Boys’, 10.30am – 4.00pm (6 teams, 11 Games)
U15 Boys/Mixed Plate Tuesday 19th March Northampton School for Boys, 9.00am – 2.00pm (6 teams, 11 Games) 
U15 Boys/Mixed Bowl Tuesday 19th March Northampton School for Boys, 2.30pm – 4.30pm (4 teams, 6 Games)
U18 Girls Championship Friday 22nd March Liverpool Aquatic Centre, 3.30pm-9.00pm (6 teams, 11 Games)
U18 Girls Plate Monday 18th March Marlborough College, 11.30pm – 4.30pm (6 teams, 11 Games)
U15 Girls Championship Tuesday 21st March Northampton School for Boys, 10.30am – 4.00pm (6 teams, 11 Games)
U13 Girls Championship Wednesday 15th May Northampton School for Boys, 11.00am – 4.30pm (6 teams, 11 Games)
U13 Boys/Mixed Championship Thursday 16th May Northampton School for Boys, 11.00am – 4.30pm (6 teams, 11 Games)

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Results