WATER POLO Bristol's Figes leads GB Euro bid

Bristol's Craig Figes leads the Great Britain Men's Water Polo team again as they bid to qualify for next year's LEN European Championships in Budapest.

In the next few hours GB start their qualification bid against hosts Georgia in Tblisi at 1830 GET time, which is three hours ahead of British Summer Time.

Bristol Central star Figes skippered GB's 2012 Olympics team and - after leading Central to the national men's title - continues to captain the national team, which also includes Cheltenham ace Robert Parker.

GB have been drawn in group A – along with Georgia, Slovakia, Poland and the Czech Republic - and prepared for this week's round-robin qualification first round with a pre-tournament training camp get together in Barcelona, Spain.

Figes admits: "It has been a difficult period for the team since the Olympics. We lost our funding and the programme has been very much reduced but we're looking forward to getting back into the water and playing as a team again."

Looking ahead to this week's qualifiers, the 34-year-old says: "It's difficult to predict the results, lots of teams are at different stages. Georgia has lost a lot of experienced players recently. We haven't played Poland or Czech Republic for around five years so we don't know how we compare at the moment.

"It's a tough schedule but we will do our best and put in 100 per cent and hopefully come away with some good results."

• GB are scheduled to play Georgia today (at 1530 BST 1830 GET) Poland tomorrow (0830 BST 1130 GET) Czech Republic on Saturday (at 1400 BST 1700 GET) and Slovakia on Sunday (0800 BST 1100 GET) - this is a schedule only and fixtures could be subject to change

GB water polo squad

Captain Craig Figes (Bristol) – Bristol Central

Robert Parker (Cheltenham) – Cheltenham

Adam Scholefield (Leeds) – Rotherham Metro

Ciaran James (Lancaster) – Lancaster

Edward Scott (Bolton) – City of Manchester

Jack Waller (Enfield) - Invicta

Jake Vincent (Solihull) – Solihull

Matthew Holland (Carshalton) – Sutton and Cheam

Sean King (Farnborough) - Invicta

Sean Ryder (Nottingham) – City of Manchester

Joe O'Regan (Oldham)– City of Manchester

Chris Armstrong (Doncaster) – City of Sheffield

Tom Curwen (Lancaster) - Lancaster

• 2014 LEN European Water Polo Championships will be staged in Budapest Hungary from July 13-26

• follow @CraigFigesGBWP on twitter

• follow @GBMensWaterPolo on twitter

• follow @BristolWP on twitter

Did you know? Figes' favourite sports team is Bristol City Football Club


Day One results Slovakia 11 Poland 1 (4-0, 3-0, 3-1, 1-0) Georgia 12 Great Britain 3 (3-0, 6-1, 1-0, 2-2)

Day 2 Czech Republic 3 Slovakia 12 (0-3, 0-3, 1-4, 2-2) Poland 3 Great Britain 11 (1-3, 1-3, 0-4, 1-1) Georgia 7 Slovakia 7, Czech Republic 8 Poland 5

Day 3 Great Britain 17 Czech Republic 4 Georgia 16 Poland 10

Today - final day Slovakia 5 Great Britain 5 (2-0, 1-1, 1-3, 1-1) Georgia 16 Czech Republic 5 (6-1, 5-1, 1-1, 4-2)

How they finished - group A Georgia 10 Slovakia 8 (both qualify) Great Britain 7 Poland 3 Czech Republic 0




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