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Thunder shake up grand finale to seal back-to-back Inter-Regional titles

North West Thunder beat North East Steelers in a thrilling finale to win the U16 Girls Division One title at the Inter-Regional Water Polo Championships.

All three podium places were undecided until the final two games at Palatine Leisure Centre, with Steelers in first place on six points, a point ahead of Thunder.

The two teams met in the final game of the tournament, with Thunder winning 14-12 to claim their second consecutive Inter-Regional trophy, having won the U14 Girls’ crown in 2017.

The showpiece was a rematch of that final two years ago and Thunder coach Lauren Tasker credited her team for recovering from their opening draw with London.

She said: “The girls thoroughly deserved their victory this weekend.

“They listened to and performed the tactics they’d learnt in training and it was amazing to watch them work together as a team and having each other’s backs.

“We knew the competition was going to be tough and that during each game, we needed to stay completely focused right to the end.

“Following a shaky start to the tournament, the girls kept their heads up and never stopped fighting for each other.

“Every single player showed great passion and the talent coming through the North West programmes is incredible. I’m extremely proud of them all.

“Overall, it was a fantastic experience for the girls and a very well organised event, so I would like to pass on a big thank you on behalf of the North West team to everyone involved.”

South East strike

The battle for bronze also went down to the wire, with third-placed London just a point ahead of their final opponents South East Anderida after three games.

London had moved into the podium positions with their first win of the tournament – a 12-2 rout of South West.

But South East came out on top, winning 8-4 to snatch the bronze.

Inter-Regional Water Polo Championships Division One

Fixtures & Results
North West Thunder5 – 5LondonFT
South West9 – 29North East SteelersFT
North West Thunder11 – 8South East AnderidaFT
London11 – 19North East SteelersFT
South West6 – 18South East AnderidaFT
London12 – 2South WestFT
North East Steelers15 – 5South East AnderidaFT
North West Thunder19 – 6South WestFT
London4 – 8South East AnderidaFT
North West Thunder14 – 12North East SteelersFT
League Table
North West Thunder4310187
North East Steelers4301366
South East Anderida420234
South West4004-550