With the County Championships almost being a distant memory, the Green Octopus’ attention reverted back to team competition in the opening round of the annual Sports Centre League on Saturday 9th February


The Sports Centre League is series of six galas that take place over the year between various swimming clubs across the county.


Points are awarded to each club based on their position achieved at each round; the points being added into a league table where the overall winner being the club that’s won the most points over the year. Promotion and relegation between the two divisions also takes place.


NLSC use the Sports Centre league galas as a chance to both introduce swimmers from our development and Junior Squads to the competitive club gala environment and give others the chance to develop their leadership skills as representatives of the club.


The experiences gained and the team spirit that’s created through the Sports Centre League is vital to the ongoing development and success of the club and our swimmers.


There was no difference on Saturday night as the Green Octopus started its second season in Division One against the best of Sherwood, Sutton, Radford, Kimberley and Loughborough Town.


Supported by our Development and Senior Squad coaches; Mandy Scotney and Jonny Higham respectively and our team managers Joe Bailey and Katherine Sharp, NLSC’s team saw debutants mix with experienced old-hands and county champions.


With their grit and determination in the water being matched by their smiles once they got out they all did the Green Octopus proud. Zoe Campbell’s bravery in her debut gala and the growing experience of Zack Hidle and Oscar Ferrar really stood out.


The racing was high quality too. Abi Charlesworth, Daniel Oyaide-Nicholls Will Soden-Barton, Ted Bailey, Holly Lockton and George Cummings alongside the irrepressible Li sisters carried on their counties form. Toby Brown, Jonny Lambert, Katherine Hewing, Ben Sharp and Jamie Danson also match-raced really well with last length comebacks resulting in finger-tip finishes to make sure our points total kept ticking along.


But Poppy Westmorland put the most impressive marker down for NLSC with two victories from her two individual races – a true pocket rocket and definitely one to watch for the future.


The fourth place finish overall was in line with expectations; the third place held at the halfway point was agonisingly close but racing is as racing does – we’ll get them next time!


Regardless, the Green Octopus shone and the strength in depth of our quality kept the crowds cheering and the swimmers happy. Onwards and upwards to the next round.


NLSC's Guide to Galas gives the full information about the range of galas and team selection policies in which NLSC compete.

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