John Spicer replaced by Claudio Palumbo as England U17 boys head coach

John Spicer has stepped down as head coach of the Swim England Water Polo Boys’ Under 17 international squad, with assistant coach Claudio Palumbo named as his replacement.

John, who was named Swim England’s Coach of the Year in 2017, will focus on working with England’s U15 boys squad.

After enjoying a lengthy playing career with Cheltenham, England and Great Britain, John has been coaching for more than 20 years.

Norman Leighton, Swim England’s talent development officer for water polo, said: “We would like to thank John for his superb work with the U17 boys squad.

“He is a valuable asset to the Swim England junior national teams and we look forward to supporting him in his ongoing role with the U15 boys.”

‘An exciting step’

In a smooth transition for the U17 squad, Claudio has moved into the head coach role.

Claudio guided West London Penguin to the U17 boys title at the Swim England Water Polo National Age Group Championships in 2019.

He also enjoyed an illustrious career as a player, winning multiple trophies with prestigious Italian club CN Posillipo, as well as representing the Italian national team.

Seven Swim England regions and 18 clubs are represented in the latest squad of 24 players, which is listed below.

Toby King, chair of the Swim England Water Polo Leadership Group, said: “I would like to congratulate the new Swim England U17 boys squad on their selection.

“This is an exciting step for these youngsters, some of whom are working towards their first game at international level.

“They will have the opportunity to develop their skills and test themselves against some of Europe’s most talented junior water polo players.”

Senior men look ahead

Meanwhile, Dave Taylor will step up into the head coach role of the England men’s senior water polo team  after serving as the assistant coach for two-and-a-half years.

Dave has coached Cheltenham’s men’s first team for many years, following on from a player career in which he represented England and Great Britain at junior and senior levels.

Dave Edwards – a former Great Britain international – will continue in his position as team manager.

Swim England Water Polo Boys’ Under 17 squad

  • Andre Savic (West London Penguin)
  • Ben Urquhart (Sheffield)
  • Charles Kingsmill (West London Penguin)
  • Corran Bradley (Derby/Sheffield)
  • Dan Day (Cheltenham)
  • Daniel Ramsey (Hucknall/Nova Centurion)
  • Emile Thurston (West London Penguin)
  • Frankie Docking-Smith (Bridgefield)
  • George Glover (Cheltenham)
  • Harry Bentham (City of Manchester)
  • Jack Dearden (Hinkley)
  • Jaimie Bond (Worthing)
  • Joe Ashworth (Bristol)
  • Josh Luff (Kingston/Worthing)
  • Lorcan Halstead (Warley)
  • Marcus Woods (Bridgefield)
  • Matthew Smith (Worthing)
  • Max Hubrich (Beckenham)
  • Owen Street (Worthing)
  • Reuben Powell (Exeter)
  • Ryan Dennis (Watford)
  • Ryan-Jay Griffiths (Sedgefield)
  • Seth Dewfield (Boldmere)
  • Theo Pliner (West London Penguin)