Batley octopush team secure national gold

Three members of the successful Batley Octopush Under-19s team who won national gold.
Three members of the successful Batley Octopush Under-19s team who won national gold.

Batley Under-19s octopush team won gold at the National Championships held at the John Charles pool in Leeds

National Championships were held in the Under-19, Under-16, Under-14 and Under-12 categories with teams competing from South West England, Dorset, South Wales, Manchester, Rochdale, York and Batley.

Games for the older age groups took place in a two metre deep pool, with the Under-12s taking part at 1.4m deep.

Batley won gold in the Under-19 competition beating their main rivals from the South West 1-0 and then 5-0 in a double round robin of four teams, with Manchesterfinishing third and York fourth.

Captain of the Batley Under-19 team is Tom Pitchforth, who was recently awarded Under-19 player of the year after he captained the Great Britain team in the World Championships held in Castellon, Spain.

Batley won bronze medals in both the Under-14 and Under-12 competitions.

The Under-12s narrowly missed out on gold after losing unexpectedly to Team SW but then fought back to draw 1-1 with the Manchester team, who were eventual winners.

The Under-14 competition was closely fought with a young Batley team doing extremely well and most of the players have another year in this category.

Four Under-16 players from Batley joined with players from Rochdale to make a combined team.

This competition was also a double round robin and although the team came fourth out of five they improved significantly during the second half of the competition.

Overall Batley were pleased with a gold and two bronze medals, whileManchester had a very successful championships winning two golds and abronze.

Batley’s adult team were also involved in the National Finals held at Sheffield’s Ponds Forge pool at the end of June and the young team did extremely well, coming eighth overall.

They lost out to local rivals Leeds in a seventh place play-off by a golden goal.