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Canoe Polo stars in the making

Adding more world medals to the tally was behind the first ever two-day training camp for future canoe polo stars, held in Palmerston North at the weekend.

Canoe Polo is an amateur sport which has been punching above its weight in recent years and, despite it being a male dominated sport, it is the women who have been collecting the medals.

Players from as far afield as Invercargill were taken back to the basics including off-water skills, boat skills, game tactics, refereeing and goalie training.

New Zealand Canoe Polo Association (NZCPA) Squad Director, David Morritt, was trying to develop a succession plan, having seen Australia go from gold medallists to underdogs in less than a decade.

“The Aussies were gold medallists in the mid-1990’s and their women’s team got bronze in 2012. We are now the dominant force in Oceania having really worked hard to train our teams representing the different age-groups, from under-18 to veterans, for the Oceania Championships,” he said.

However, every other year prior to World Championships, the applicants trialling for selection are the only ones who get the top training, Morritt said.

“Our NZ women’s team are the current World Champions and the U21 women’s team were bronze medallists at the last two World Championships.

Looking to address the gap, the Development Camp – Road to 2019-2022, was established, drawing in 56 young players aged between 13-18 years old to train in a high intensity environment.

Helping make the camp a success were NZ team coaches, 8 top local players, an accredited International Canoe Federation referee and a large parent support crew.

“We want to give our young athletes better skills which they can then carry through earlier in their sporting career and achieve higher accolades for themselves and New Zealand Canoe Polo. We want gold medals across the board.”

While NZCPA are already conducting selection training camps for this year’s yet-to- be-announced NZ teams heading to Canada in July, spectators can see what canoe polo is all about at the annual Atahua Cup tournament at Hokowhitu Lagoon on 3-4 February 2018.

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Application to attend the NZCPA “Road to 2019-2022” Development Camp

Do you want to represent New Zealand in the future? Are you thinking of playing at Oceania 2019 and then onto……….World Championship level? We share your vision, we can help you fulfil your goals. You have the desire to be the best, we have the resources to equip our athletes with the necessary skills required. Now is the time to start your journey……the road starts here!

We now welcome applications from players wishing to attained the “Road to 2019-2022” Development Camp which is to be held in Palmerston North on 13th and 14th January.

Full details and applications can be made by clicking here.

Please read carefully through the form before completing it and be aware that places are limited for the camp and that the closing date for applications is the 3rd December.

Parents;- We are also looking for volunteers to help with the running of the camp.

Contact if you have any questions.

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Competitions Director Appointed

NZCPA are pleased to announce Jed Graham has been appointed as our new Competitions Director. With a busy 2018 in the pipeline we congratulate Jed and know he will bring a wealth of experience to the position.

Jed has been involved in canoe polo for 18 years and will use the skills acquired running events for CPHB and most recently the 2017 Inter Regional champs to further enhance NZCPA’s competitions.

Jed was co-opted to coordinated the 2017 Inter Regional champs, despite not being able to attend due to the impending birth of his daughter. He did a fantastic job working with all the regions to ensure the event ran smoothly and there was a clear flow of information to the regions.

Congratulations Jed.

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Applications for Competitions Director Position

The New Zealand Canoe Polo Association is calling for applications for the volunteer position of Competitions Director.

New Zealand Canoe Polo is an incorporated society with a mission “to promote and encourage all aspects of Canoe Polo in New Zealand for the future of the sport and its participants.” The Association is governed by a Board of Directors (elected and appointed) and is affiliated to the International Canoe Federation through its membership to the New Zealand Canoeing Federation. New Zealand Canoe Polo has a membership of approximately 2000 people with a further 2000 conservatively estimated to play the sport in New Zealand.

In recent years New Zealand Canoe Polo’s activities have grown significantly. The successful appointee will be required to lead the voluntary Competition Council in the delivery of national competitions.

The successful applicant is likely to have the following key attributes:

  • a demonstrated ability to develop relationships with volunteers and members;
  • proven ability to maintain accurate financial records and prepare budgets;
  • project management and organizational skills;
  • good problem-solving skills.  Please also read the position description.

Applications to be sent to

Competitions Director Position Description – Oct 2017

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2018 World Championships Manager Appointments

NZCPA are pleased to announce our Management Team for the 2018 World Championship Campaign.

Womens Senior Manager – Meryn Hinton

Womens Assistant Manager – Jannell Eade

Mens Senior Manager – David Morritt

Mens Assistant Manager – Emma Hicks

Meryn has a proven background managing in previous campaigns which will be pivotal in ensuring our Womens needs, off water, are well catered leaving our Coaches to focus on our players and game play.

Jannell has an impressive background in coordinating and managing sports teams in her day job, I’m sure her enthusiasm and positive outlook will be a huge benefit to us all.

Along with her experience, Emma, as World Champion player, coach and team supporter, brings her mature and approachable manner which will no doubt position her well as she focuses on the management of our U21 Mens squad.

We are incredibly lucky to have such a high calibre management team as we prepare for Canada.

I’m sure you will join me in wishing them all well,


Squads Director

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2018 Assistant Men’s coach appointed

NZCPA is pleased to announce the appointment of Eric Gurden as the 2018 Assistant Men’s coach. His primary responsibility will we coaching the U21 team to the 2018 World Champs.

We look forward to working with Eric and supporting him on building upon his successes achieved in the 2017 Oceania Campaign.

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2018 U21 Squad Information and Applications

2018 U21 Squad Applications

NZCPA are now seeking applications for the U21 Mens and Womens Squads for the 2018 World Championship campaign.

Applications must strictly be returned by the 31st August 2017 using the following link;

U21 2018 Worlds Application Form

The application fee is $100 payable to the Squad Account; 02 0876 0048375.

2018 Junior Development initiative:

NZCPA are in the initial stages of planning a training camp in January 2018 that will involve a wide range of coaching staff to better prepare our U18 athletes to succeed as part of future Oceania and World championship campaigns.

Further details will follow in the coming weeks.

Please email if you have any questions or require any assistance.

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Applications for 2018 World Championships Management Positions now being taken

NZCPA are now taking applications for Managers and Assistant Managers for the 2018 World Championships campaign. The 2018 World Championships will be held in Welland, Canada.

NZ will be represented in both Senior and U21 categories for both men and women. Further information can be found in the campaign overview document.

Player applications will be opening within the next week.

2018 World Championships Campaign Overview

Position Description_Assistant Men’s Manager Worlds 2018

Position Description_Assistant Women’s Manager Worlds 2018

NZ – Mens Squads Manager Application Form_worlds 2018

NZ Women’s Squad Manager Application Form_worlds 2018

NZ Mens Assistant Manager Application Form_worlds 2018

NZ Women Assistant Manager Application Form_worlds 2018

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2018 World Championships Coaching Applications

NZCPA is looking to appoint new coaching staff for the 2018 World Championships campaign to the following positions:

•Assistant Men’s Coach- closes 17th August 2017
•Head Coach: Women- closes 31st August 2017
•Head Coach: Men- closes 31st August 2017

We envisage coaches starting the U21 campaign in September 2017and the Senior Campaign starting in October/November. Coaches would be expected to run 5-7 training camps prior to touring with the teams to the World Championships. All reasonable costs associated with the role are covered. Coaches are expected to work with the Squad management to shape the final tour to meet the expectation of good results (within the constraints of a player-funded model). The World Championships are being held in Welland, Canada, August 1-5 2018.

NZCPA is also looking to run a Junior Development program for U18 players at the beginning of 2018. We expect our National Coaches to be involve in shaping this program as well.

If you have any queries around these roles please feel free to contact the Executive Director: James Mitchell on 021684993 or

2018 NZ Coach Application Form

2018 Team Coach position description

2018 Assistant Coach position description

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