Schools Water Polo (ESSA)

The English Schools’ Swimming Association (ESSA) has been providing an opportunity for all schools in England to 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 culminating in a 6 team national final for all three age groups and for both genders following several rounds of competition.

Cadet competitions aim to attract new players into competitive water polo for those who haven’t already competed in the main competition. There are now two age groups for the Cadet competition at U11 (Year 6 and below) and U13 (Year 8 and below).

The 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 at the start of the academic year by the ESSA Council). To be considered for this competition a pupil must attend a school in England. Following the Duke of Cambridge Cup tournament, schools’ international honours can be achieved following selection by the ESSA Head Coach, which is usually for the best 16 players for both gender teams. 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.

For more information visit the water polo section of the ESSA website or contact Neil Green ESSA Honorary Water Polo Organiser here

Click on the relevant links below for more info re ESSA representative events:

ESSA at Malta Exiles International junior men’s and women’s tournament October 2016

ESSA Teams to play Australian Schools December 2018

Australian Schools England Tour Dec 6-15, 2018 – all the match results start to finish

ESSA Boys’ trip to Szentes, Hungary Oct 22-27, 2019 – players and match results

ESSA Girls’ trip to Szentes, Hungary Oct 22-27, 2019 – players and match results

University Water Polo

University water polo competitions in the UK are provided by 2 organisations...

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Featured News

Senior men’s water polo eases back into the pool!



We are very pleased to announce that, following completion of the 2021-22 Danube League season by the Great Britain senior women’s development squad, it is now the turn of the senior men’s program. To that end, Swim England, in conjunction with a local organising committee led by Ian Elliot, will host a senior men’s friendly international tournament for the Home Nations, over the weekend of 28-29 May. The event will take place at the excellent deep water facility at Alan Higgs Centre in Coventry CV3 1HW,

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