Hucclecote returned victorious last night from Bahrain after taking on all the Gulf teams to retain the Invitational cup they won last year.
Apart from 2 players, this was a new experience for the rest of the squad. The players played 7 matches on the first day, taking on the top teams from the Gulf, & on the 2nd day defeated the top 2 mens teams!
The competition was strong, but Hucclecote's speed & flair left most opposition standing.
Throughout the court, Hucclecote's defence was impressive, with no team getting into double figures! Mid court, the ball was played at speed, with strong drives to the circle, finding the shooters with ease, who converted consistently.
At times the passages of play drew gasps of admiration from the spectators, and as one commented, "they really are a pleasure to watch."
One of the hardest things the players had to cope with was the extreme heat & playing outside, both conditions which the Gulf teams were familiar with. However, by the 2nd days play, the squad were more used to the conditions & frequent dips in the pool helped!!
After 2 days of competition, Hucclecote were undefeated & retained the Invitational Cup, beating Abu Dhabu A in the final.
Squad;Gemma Hallbrook, Anna Joll, Carly Taylor, Mikaila Iffel, Sarah Lee, Kerry Walsh, Caroline Bedford, Jane Hicks ( capt) & Rosie Barrett.
There was a guest appearance by Cath Hollingsworth who had travelled over from Dubai.
Those older players in the club will remember Cath left us 2 years ago to take up a teaching job in Dubai, having played for Hucclecote for many years & captaining the 1st team in her time.
Thanks to Maxine Buffin our travelling umpire & Barbara Warburton, team manager ( even though she left the kit bag at the hotel on the 2nd day!!)
All in all, the trip was again another huge success & one which all players will remember for a long time!
"It was a pleasure to be in charge of this squad for the weekend, having not seen them play this season, I was impressed by the skill & flair they demonstrated" said Sue Wainwright.
We hope to have a selection of photos shortly in the picture gallery