Joe sets sights on Euro qualification with GB

Joe Hazeldine in water polo action

Joe Hazeldine in water polo action

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Worthing water polo star Joe Hazeldine cannot wait to represent Great Britain in the European under-19 Championships qualification tournament in Turkey next week.

Hazeldine is part of a 15-man British squad, who will take on Montenegro, Turkey and Belgium, with the top two qualifying for the championship finals in September.

He said: “I’m really looking forward to it. There was an initial squad of 50 and now I’ve been named in the final one.

“We’ve got three games and need to win two to qualify for the championships.

“We’ve got a good chance and we’ll go into it optimistic.”

Hazeldine has been playing water polo for seven years, as a centre-back or left-winger, and said: “I used to swim and was a borderline national swimmer but I always found water polo training more interesting and I prefer team to individual sports.”

Worthing water polo coach Alastair Roberts said: “We are obviously all delighted that Joe has been selected for GB and it is very much deserved because he has been working incredibly hard over the past few months and years.

“Joe has been travelling regularly to Manchester for training camps and warm-up matches recently and he is looking in really good form at the moment.

“Joe started playing at around ten years of age and he progressed through the various junior age group teams and he is now a key member of our men’s National League squad.

“Everyone at the club is really pleased for Joe and he follows Joel Abbott, Scott Martin and Ziggy Tate, who all played for the GB junior squad in the past few years.”

Worthing eased to a 22-8 victory over Brighton in the final of the Sussex senior knock-out competition.

Brighton had a two-goal handicap headstart but Worthing dominated the game throughout to retain their trophy.

Brighton struggled to create many chances against Worthing’s well-organised defence and Worthing always looked dangerous on the counter attack.

Joao Martins scored five, George Wood and Peter Benedek netted four and Ben Curtis, Joe Hazeldine and Richard Hopper all struck hat-tricks.

WORTHING: Ben Alcorn (g/k), Robbie Scott, Ben Curtis, Joe Hazeldine, Jacob Nash, Jon Bedder, Richard Hooper, Peter Benedek, Joao Martins, George Wood, Alastair Hardinge.

Six Worthing water polo players were part of the Sussex girls’ under-19 squad who won the London/SE Regional Championship with a 9-2 win against Kent.

The Worthing players involved were Gemma Coulson, Annah Bowles, Daisy Hazeldine, Alice Mantle, Abby-Lou Rocky and Lara Partridge.

All of the Worthing girls made a significant contribution and Daisy Hazeldine and Lara Partridge both scored twice.

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