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Waterpolo - 19. December 2007.


Manchester Aquatics Centre will host the event which brings international water polo back to the city for the second time in as many years.

As well as allowing Britain's female water polo players compete in a world-class event on home soil, the Championships provide another opportunity for British Swimming staff and volunteers to gain valuable experience of hosting international events in preparation for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

At this year's LEN European B Championships Women in Prague, Britain's squad came home with the silver medal and goalkeeper Rosemary Morris being crowned Goalkeeper of the Tournament.

The women's team has made significant progress since Head Coach Szilveszter Fekete came into post with all of the team now based in Manchester.

British Swimming Sponsorship and Events Director Katie Brazier sees the event as key in the governing body's preparations ahead of 2012.

"We are delighted to have been awarded the Championships which follows on from successfully hosting the men's event earlier this year," said Brazier.

"Hosting these events gives our athletes the chance to take part in international competition and for us to further develop our event management and officiating as well as giving extra experience to our volunteers."

Councillor Mike Kane, Executive Member for Arts and Leisure for Manchester City Council, was keen to express his thoughts.

"Manchester is delighted to be chosen to host the LEN European B Water Polo Championships 2009 Women. Following the success of the 2007 Men's event, we will be looking to continue the development of the sport in the City in partnership with British Swimming," he said.

"We are also delighted that Manchester is gaining recognition as the home of British Water Polo and will continue to work with the governing body to further strengthen the sport before the London 2012 Olympics."

UK Sport's Senior Events Consultant, Martin Morton, said that the confirmation of the 2009 women's event was another promising step forward for the sport, and the National Lottery backed World Class Events Programme.

"UK Sport is again very pleased to be supporting British Swimming and the development of water polo by providing both financial support and ongoing advice for the successful hosting of world-class events. The LEN European B Championships will only add to what is becoming a strong year for European level competition hosted by the UK in 2009," said Morton.

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