On Saturday 21st April, Worcester Swimming Club travelled down to Cardiff to take part in the National Arena League Finals that was the culmination of the premier team competition in the UK

Worcester represented the West Midlands in the “B” Final, having finished just 2 points behind Derby in the Regional Final last December…and were one of only two debutant teams (the other being Bromley) at this hugely prestigious National event held across two days

All the swimmers, coaches and parents knew that it would be a very demanding task competing against the best of the best, and as expected, the standard of swimming was incredible, as was the atmosphere. It was truly electric with Worcester receiving the award for best supported team.

For Worcester, on an upward curve, having finished 5th, 4th, 3rd, 2nd in the last four Regional finals, being there was a massive achievement, but none of the swimmers were prepared to settle for that and every single one gave their all to earn maximum points for the team and finish as high up the League table as possible

In the end, though, Worcester had to settle for 10th place, with City of Cardiff the runaway winners. The final points were Cardiff 390, Northampton 296, Camden Swiss Cottage 295, Thanet 282, Sevenoaks 281, Bromley 271, Ealing 266, Swansea 248, Liverpool 220 and Worcester 195

Against such strong opposition, podium finished were extremely hard to come by. However, 12-year old David Annis and 14-year old Daniel Day managed that, twice, with a brace of remarkable swims each

David was the first to record a win with 1st place in the 50m Backstroke in a terrific 33.74, over a second clear of his nearest challenger before also snatching a 2nd place in a very tight 50m Freestyle race

It was the same story for Daniel, 1st in the Backstroke, narrowly 2nd in the Freestyle. However, his 100m Backstroke (1.03.00) was a very special swim, 3.9 seconds ahead of the second swimmer and a new National League record.

The only other swimmer to manage a top 3 finish was Olivia Fletcher with a strong 1.00.20 for 3rd in the girls 16/u 100m Freestyle but above all else, this was a team performance with every single swimmer contributing

The full squad of Worcester swimmers was: Amelie Fox-Haskins, Maisie Lyons, Isobel Foster, Amelie Forsyth-Ball, Olivia Eggleton, Rebeeca Yates, Lauren Annis, Aimee Monks, Lydia Cooper, Amelia Gearey, Megan Annis, Holly Workman, Josie Armstrong, Olivia Fletcher, Jenny Gearey, Maddie Fox-Haskins, Naomi Marsden, Lucy Clayton, Tabby Monkhouse, Charlotte Hall, David Annis, Michael Agoston, Charlie Dixon, Harry Chandler, William Thomas, Beau Vaughan-Hawkins, Daniel Day, George Glover, Brodie Willetts, Adam Rutter, Eddie Cox, Alex Farmer, William Gearey, Aaron Cook, Louis Doyle, Matthew Richards, Sam Hall, Robin Williams, Matthew Thomas, Anthony Redfern and Joel Smith

Head Coach Mark Stowe was delighted with the performance and looking forward said “the Club’s ambition now must be to build on this success in the next few years, qualify again for the National finals and finish higher up the table in the B Final, or even secure a place in the A Final”