Saturday’s 1st team water polo match against King Edward is going to be a bit of a bittersweet occasion.
It’s the last time the matrics in the team are going to be turning out for the school and, to mark the moment, recent old boys who played for the school are invited to come along to see the matrics off, and to invite them to become part of the Jeppe Old Boys polo fraternity.
There aren’t many matrics in the team – just three – which is a good sign for the future, but one, in particular will leave a hole in the water which is going to be difficult to fill.
The captain, Luke Allan, is not sure how many games he has played for the 1st team (given the way in which polo is organised it must be hundreds) but he has been a regular since he was in grade 9, so four years of involvement come to an end his weekend.
“I’m sad that it’s going to be my last game, of course,” he says, “but I’m also excited to be starting a new chapter.” Luke already plays for the Jeppe Old Boys Club 1st team, and he intends carrying on with that, so he will still be down at the Jeppe pool regularly next year.
“It’s been great to be have been involved with such an exciting young team,” he says. “There were only three matrics this season, four grade 11s and the rest are still in grade 10. And with that side we did better at SACS that we have ever done before – winning seven of our pool games and losing narrowly to the eventual winners in the quarterfinals.”
He is confident that this team will surprise some at the Saints “stayers” tournament in two week’s time. “Our coach, Mr Hansen, has done a lot to bring us together as a team. The spirit is great and we play for each other, they can only go from strength to strength.”
After Saturday Luke is taking a complete break from water polo. “I’ve withdrawn from the provincial team because I’m concentrating on the final exams now. I’ve set my mind on studying law next year and nothing is more important that getting good marks. There will be plenty of time for water polo after that.”
A mature approach from a fine player and a great captain. Luke Allan is going to be missed.