'Point proven to UK Sport': Water polo star Chloe Wilcox basks in Team GB win over world champions, as the Europeans appear on horizon (From The Westmorland Gazette)
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'Point proven to UK Sport': Water polo star Chloe Wilcox basks in Team GB win over world champions, as the Europeans appear on horizon
WATER polo star Chloe Wilcox reckons Great Britain’s defeat of illustrious world champions Spain has proven to UK Sport the wrong decision was made in respect of Olympic funding.
Reagill’s Wilcox kept her composure to score a crucial late penalty as Great Britain’s women staved off a Spanish comeback in the final quarter during their World League qualifying match.
Sealing a 9-7 victory at the Manchester Aquatics Centre, the result will go down as one of the finest results in the history of GB women’s water polo.
The backdrop to the fixture was the uncertain future faced by the Great British team following UK Sport’s £4.5m funding withdrawal, although Wilcox insists a point has been made.
“The result shows what a good team we are, perhaps we just needed a coach like Kostas Vamvakaris to organise us and give us confidence,” said Wilcox.
“The last few months have been horrendous and there was certainly the added incentive to show UK Sport they have made the wrong decision regarding funding.
“I think it was the best result in the team’s history and on the day we played brilliantly. We stuck to the tactics and concentrated.
“It was our last-ever home game and we just gave it everything. We had nothing to lose.
“We trained so hard in the build up to the match as we knew it was the only way we could show UK Sport how good a team we are and we deserve the funding they’ve cut.”
It has been quite a few weeks for Wilcox who won gold with England at the Commonwealth Water Polo Championships in Aberdeen earlier this month.
And the 27-year-old firmly believes recent events, particularly the win against Spain, are the perfect preparation ahead of this summer’s European Championships in Budapest.
“I’m back in Spain with my club team CN Mataro but I almost wanted to stay at home because we have this momentum going where everyone is really motivated ahead of the Europeans,” she added.
“There was already such a buzz from the Commonwealths and the Spain game has given us much more confidence.
“We’ll prepare for the Europeans the best we possibly can. It is likely to be the last thing we do together as the team is going to disband afterwards.
“We intend to give it everything in a bid to do something special.”
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