British canoe polo take Portugal by storm
What a week for the British Canoe Polo Squad, with arguably the most successful campaign of recent years at a major championship bringing home 3 sets of medals.
The women’s team managed to regain their European title from 2011, by winning the semi final (vs France) and the final (vs Germany) on golden goals. Big goals coming from ‘The GOAT’ Ginny Coyles and Bethan Littlewood to bring home the Gold Medal! The women managed to successfully mix experience with young players to get past the French and Germans, they were the only team to stand between the Germans winning all four competition golds.
The Men’s team with an average age of 23, were drawn into the group of death with France and Spain but managed to win the group, knocking out the European Champions of 2017, Spain. In the second round the men managed to top the group again beating Italy and Belgium and drawing to Switzerland sending them through to play Poland in the Semi-final. A comfortable 7-2 win over Poland and 4 goals from Shivan Mccutcheon saw them into the final for the first GB Mens final since 2005! The final was a fiercely matched competition with both teams defending well, GB took a lead on 8mins with a left handed shot from Ross Montgomery and the team defended well to protect this lead. Sadly the germans scored twice on second half fast breaks, the last with 15 seconds left in the game. Overall a massive medal for the GB Men who were all outstanding during the week!
The U21 Girls managed to break the 4th place curse from the last few competitions and also made it into the final by convincingly beating France in the Semi-final. In the final they put up a fantastic fight but lost to the Germans also.
The U21 Men finished 11th with some thrilling performances, they are a fresh team and have plenty of years left to bond and improve as a team in the under 21 category. What and awesome competition; great venue, smooth organisation, sunny weather and good British performances. And all four teams using Peak UK Custom PFD’s
Thanks to Peak for the support - Look smart, Feel smart, Play smart…
Words & Pictures - Ross Montgomery