Weston Water Polo Squads
Chief Coach - Mike Coles
Mike has been a member of Weston-super-Mare Swimming Club since he was four years old. He started playing water polo in 1968 at the tender age of 12 with Jimmy Tancock and Chris Ducker as his coaches. In a long and distinguished playing career, he represented not only the club but also Somerset and Western Counties.
At the age of 14 he was selected to play for the senior men in the National Water Polo League, travelling to London on a weekday evening.
He turned to coaching in the 1980s, first coaching Weston's ladies team, progressing on to the Somerset Ladies. He then progressed to the men's team at Weston, as well as the juniors. He also became the secretary of water polo for the club in 1980. He also took on the running of the Bristol & West Water Polo League in 1985, and from 1994 took on the duties of Somerset County water polo secretary as well as their chief coach.
From there he was selected to represent the county on the Western Counties Water Polo Committee, and he took over from Pete Sherman as the Water Polo Development Officer for Western Counties in 2001.
In 2003 he was asked to represent the South West on the ASA's Water Polo Technical Committee, and later in that year took over the role of National Competition Secretary looking after the ASA's water polo competitions, a role he held until 2009.
in 2014 Mike was appointed Somerset President, and this year he has been appointed as the forthcoming president of Swim England South West Region, taking office in 2018-2019. He is also former club chairman and secretary, as well as being an ex-chairman of the Swim England South West Region Water Polo Technical Committee.
Nick Purslow - Senior Coach
Nick has taken over the running of the senior side as Mike pulls back from coaching. He is the son of Weston's former goalkeeper and swimming club chairman, Chris Purslow.
Nick has been coming along to Weston Water Polo ever since he was born and his mum, Jennie, used to bring him along to matches in a carrycot.
Nick played for the team at both junior and senior level and has also represented Somerset and Western Counties, as well as having an England trial.
Unfortunate he had to finish playing at an early stage due to a shoulder injury, be he is thoroughly enjoying his coaching role, for both Weston and the county. He has also been a member of the Swim England South West Region Water Polo Technical Committee.
Ed Tye - Water Polo Secretary & Junior Coach
Ed joined Weston Swimming Club's water polo section in 2016, and since then has taken on the role of water polo secretary, as well as representing water polo on the management committee of the club.
Ed's water polo career started with playing for the University of Bristol water polo team which won BUSA for three years following.
His background is actually in competitive swimming.
Matt Vincent - Senior Team Captain
Matt has been a member of Weston-super-Mare Swimming Club since a very early age and came along to water polo when the Sunday junior sessions were held at Knightstone Pool.
He took a break from the sport whilst away at university studyijng for his teaching degree and playing cricket, and after a period teaching PE at Westhaven School, he returned to the sport, and using his organisational skills took over the organisation of the players, and then progressed to being made captain of the senior team.
He has represented Somerset at both junior and senior level and has helped with coaching the squad with Nick.
Matt Morgan - Water Polo Social Secretary
Matt is another product of the water polo conveyor belt at Weston-super-Mare. A former competitive swimmer with the former Mendip Swimming Club, he came along to water polo as a 10-year-old, and we've been stuck with him ever since, although he did take a short break whilst so-called taking a degree at Nottingham University, but he came back!
Matt has also represented Somerset at both junior and senior level, and he is now responsible for collecting fines from the players after games, and together with other members of the social committee, organising events such as the Christmas Dinner, etc
Youngest son of the chief coach (Sean, the eldest plays for City of Bristol), Liam has been a member of Weston-super-Mare Swimming Club since he was born. He has represented the county at both junior and senior level, as well as representing Western Counties. He has played National League Water Polo for both the University of Bristol and Swindon.
He was a former champions competitive swimmer as well and held the south-west school's butterfly record for a number of years. Unfortunately, his swimming career came to an end when he dislocated his shoulder during a butterfly race, which caused him to give it up swimming.
He was introduced to the sport by his father at the of 10 playing for Wincanton Water Polo. After getting to know the sport, he then signed for Frome at the age of 15, competing in the Bristol & West Water Polo League for them.
After seven years at Frome, he moved to Weston-super-Mare in 2017 and signed for them, and with one of his first matches, he helped Weston win the Somerset Senior Men's Water Polo League, with a victory over his old club, Frome.
He has represented Somerset at both junior and senior level, and with the senior team helped them win the Swim England South West Region senior water polo tournament in 2017.
Danny Jacobs - Goalkeeper
The 37-year-old Dutchman, born in Zwolle in the Netherlands, moved to Weston-super-Mare where he took up a post as project manager of the Weston Sand Sculpture Festival.
As he had played water polo in Holland, he immediately started to look around for a local team to continue his playing career, and discovered us, having just lost our previous goalkeeper with a job move, it was ideal.
That was at the end of 2017. What are his strenghs? Why not come along to a game at Hutton Moor and see for yourself!
Alec Gahame - Assistant Social Secretary
Alec is another product of Weston Water Polo, having come along with his elder brother and younger brother to junior water polo, and a former junior team captain, he has continued playing for Weston-super-Mare after his swimming career with the club had ended.
Alec has represented the county at both junior and senior level, and is a stalwart of the senior team.
Dean Bird - Assistant Social Secretary
Our entrepreneurial team member who has been a car salesman, plumbing and heating engineer and business owner, Dean first came along to water polo from a non-swimming background and was taught the game by some very patient coaches.
He did have a short spell away from the sport when he tried his hand at gig racing, but unfortunately, they did not have the same sense of humour as water polo players, so he has returned to the sport he loves.
James was a promising junior player, but then, when he had to start working for a loving, left the sport, but returned to us in 2017, enticed back by his brother Alec.
He has represented Weston and the county at both junior and senior level, as well as swimming competitively for Weston.
One of the elder statesmen of water polo at Weston, Mark is the younger son of Marian and Bill Dunstone. Marian was former coach and chairman of Weston-super-Mare Swimming Club, and Bill was also a member of the swimming coaching staff.
Left-hand Mark is more often seen shoring up Weston Water Polo's defence these days. He has represented the county at both junior and senior level, as well as being part of Weston's former National League team back in the 1980s, playing alongside Mike Coles and Nick Purslow.
Reece Trapani - Another Lefty
Reece is another former competitive swimmer for Weston-super-Mare Swimming Club.