a short lesson

1930Water Polo evolved from an aquatic version of rugby played in the rivers and lakes of England. The format of the game was progressively refined and by the 1800's, the game had spread to the United States and throughout Europe. In 1900, it was part of the Olympic Games in Paris. At first, the British dominated, however since the 1930's, Europeans began their reign with Germany, then Hungary, and more recently, Yugoslavia, Italy, Spain becoming world champions. Played professionally throughout the world today, European teams are the most powerful. Australian women won gold at the Sydney Olympics and Australian men rank amongst the top ten in the world. Late in 2003, top professional teams from Greece, Croatia and Italy joined the Fremantle Mariners at Bicton Pool to compete for the inaugural Tom Hoad Cup.

tom hoad

tomLong standing Melville Water Polo club member Tom Hoad, an eight time Olympian, was Australian captain from 1964-72 and coached the Australian Olympic Men's Water Polo team from 1976-88. In 1968, Tom was appointed to FINA, the world governing body for swimming. He was Chairman of the 1998 World Swimming Championships committee for the games which were held in Perth.

Now retired, Tom coached the Fremantle Mariners to three Australian National League titles out of an unprecedented nine consecutive grand final appearances. His record as both a player and coach, along with his respect in the international water polo community, is without peer. The Fremantle side will compete against fully professional European teams eager to maintain the northern hemisphere's dominance, as well as other teams from around the world in this truly international sport. Tom Hoad has always strived to lift the standard of Water Polo in Australia. By exposing local players to elite levels of competition, the tournament named in his honour will go along way to achieving that aim.

the game

wpTeams comprise six players plus one goal keeper. Players wear caps to allow easy identification. They compete for four eight-minute periods. Players move the ball by passing through the air or across the water surface to a teammate. Players carry the ball while swimming or dribbling (similar to basketball). Each team has 30 seconds to shoot the ball at the goal. If no shot is taken, a free throw is awarded to the opposing team.

Referees indicate fouls by blowing their whistle and pointing in the direction of team which receives the foul. Fouls range from a free throw to exclusion, usually for 20 seconds. Swimmers must stay afloat throughout by treading water or swimming throughout the entire match and must not touch the sides or the bottom of the pool. In the event of a draw, the game will be decided by penalty shoot-out (similar to football).

Although professional and serious competition is very physical with top players amongst the world's best conditioned athletes, the game offers plenty of fun for family members of both genders and is suitable for all ages.

international flavour

bictonThe Tom Hoad Cup is a chance to showcase the attractions and the rich history and culture of Fremantle especially - as well as the unique laid-back, casual lifestyle of our balmy West Australian summer. The festival atmosphere will be reflected in a program of continuous entertainment and live music throughout the event all day and well into the night. Included will be an art exhibition by local painters. A wide range of diverse food offerings will reflect the origins of the participating teams.

past tournaments

Tom Hoad Cup 2011

Gold Medal:Partizan Belgrade, Serbia
Silver Medal:Fremantle Mariners, Australia
Bronze Medal:Barbarians
4th Place:Japan
5th Place:China

Tom Hoad Cup 2010

Gold Medal:Szeged, Hungary
Silver Medal:Fremantle Mariners, Australia
Bronze Medal:Guangdong, China
4th Place:Japan
5th Place:Barbarians

Tom Hoad Cup 2009

Gold Medal:Barbarians
Silver Medal:Fremantle Mariners, Australia
Bronze Medal:Vasas, Hungary
4th Place:China
5th Place:Japan

Tom Hoad Cup 2008

Gold Medal:Barbarians
Silver Medal:Fremantle Mariners, Australia
Bronze Medal:Guangdong, China
4th Place:Ethnikos, Greece
5th Place:Galatasaray, Turkey
6th Place:Tsukubu University, Japan

Tom Hoad Cup 2007

Gold Medal:Australian All Stars
Silver Medal:Fremantle Mariners, Australia
Bronze Medal:Partizan Belgrade, Serbia
4th Place:Romania
5th Place:China

Tom Hoad Cup 2006

Gold Medal:Partizan Belgrade, Serbia
Silver Medal:Fremantle Mariners, Australia
Bronze Medal:Brescia, Italy
4th Place:China
5th Place:South Africa
6th Place:NCS Universities, Japan

Tom Hoad Cup 2005

Gold Medal:Fremantle Mariners, Australia
Silver Medal:BVSC, Hungary
Bronze Medal:Guangdong, China
4th Place:South Africa

Tom Hoad Cup 2004

Gold Medal:Fremantle Mariners, Australia
Silver Medal:Rari Nantes Florentia, Italy
Bronze Medal:Guangdong, China
4th Place:Croatian Junior National Team

Tom Hoad Cup 2003

Gold Medal:Rari Nantes Florentia, Italy
Silver Medal:Fremantle Mariners, Australia
Bronze Medal:Medvesek, Croatia
4th Place:Athens Combined Team, Greece