The Madibaz Water Polo Club enjoyed a successful time in the pool this year, capping their achievements with a bronze medal at the University Sport South Africa week and the Port Elizabeth men’s league title.
Under the guidance of coach Delaine Christian they have set high standards for the future.
Christian, herself, received recognition by being voted coach of the year at Nelson Mandela University‘s annual Achiever Awards function.
The third-place finish in the USSA tournament in Johannesburg was one of the high points, said Christian.
“Just before the tournament two key players had to pull out because of various reasons, meaning we had a very inexperienced side.”
She added they had focused on playing hard and working together as a team, without pressuring themselves with any major expectations.
“To come third (behind winners UCT and Stellenbosch) was way above what we had imagined, especially as we had ended fourth or fifth in the last three years.”
Madibaz water polo manager Melinda Goosen said the men had done extremely well to win a competitive local league, adding to the club’s honours for the year.
Goosen said Christian had made a major impact in water polo at the varsity.
She mentored the Madibaz women’s team to the NMB league title in 2016-17 and helped to establish men’s and women’s second teams.