The national league season runs from September to December with all the teams attending the same venue and playing 2 to 3 games a weekend. At the end of the season all teams will have played each other twice.

After 11 games Basingstoke have won 4 games, drawn 1 and lost 6. The team have taken time to gel, as the squad has been enhanced with 6 players from clubs in Hampshire and Surrey and they have also had to come to terms with the greater physical and tactical demands of the national league.

The first weekend at Walsall saw the team play Sheffield, Bedford and Jersey. The match against Bedford saw the team lose 11 – 7. The next match for the team was Sheffield. We new this game was going to be tough as Sheffield had recently been relegated from Divisions I and II and had a great depth of experience. Basingstoke applied themselves well, but still came out on the wrong end of the score line 14 – 8. The team were desperate to get their first win under their belt to restore some much needed confidence. Their victory came in the shape of a 19 – 6 victory over Jersey.

The second weekend saw the squad travel to Grantham with games lined up against Invicta Marlins, Portobello and Newcastle. The Invicta game was a close fought game. Basingstoke held their form and won the game 8 – 7. The next match saw Basingstoke pitted against the Scottish waterpolo champions Portobello. Prior to the start of the game Portobello boasted an unbeaten record. Not surprisingly Portobello remained in control throughout the match and won 17 – 9. The team returned to winning ways against Newcastle posting a score of 12 – 7.

The third weekend saw the team return to Walsall for games against British Armed Forces and Bristol University. The team were disappointed to only earn a draw against British Armed Forces 7 – 7. The score remained at 2 -1 to Basingstoke for over half the game. They then managed to build a 3 goal lead, that they let slip away. Their opponents equalised with 30 seconds remaining. The game against Bristol University saw the team turn in a disappointing display, with the university coming out victorious 12 – 6. Two key players were excluded from the game for foul play. This contributed to the poor display during the match.

Weekend four was held in Liverpool, the team had to travel without their leading scorer. Basingstoke’s opponents for the weekend were Jersey, Sheffield and Bedford. Jersey were unable to attend due to flight problems, so the team were awarded the points. Against the 2nd place team Sheffield, Basingstoke put in a good team performance but could not overcome their well organised opponents, losing 12 – 6. Against Bedford the team started poorly and were 4 – 0 at the end of the first quarter. The team improved their performance to win the final two quarters but could not overcome their slow start, losing 8 – 4.

The next weekend for the team will be held at the Aquadrome on the 13/14th November. Their opponents will be Newcastle (13/11 5.40pm), Portobello (14/11 10am) and Invicta Marlins (14/11 4.15pm). Please come and support the team as the games against Newcastle and Invicta will be vital for Basingstoke to maintain their 5th place in the league.

The local members of the team are Steve Paton, Steve Fairhead, Gavin Bridger, Paul Adams, Ben Naylor and Neil Ingram.

Team Goal diff Points
Portobello +103 20
Sheffield +48 17
Bristol University +18 14
Bedford +17 13
Basingstoke -15 9
Invicta Marlins -43 6
BAF -47 5
Jersey -76 4
Newcastle -5 -1

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