Madibaz water polo star Casey Mcleavy paid tribute to her coaches for her success in the sport after being named the female player of the year at the recent Nelson Mandela Bay Aquatics prize-giving.
The 19-year-old was one of several Nelson Mandela University aquatic student-athletes recognised for their achievements at the function in Port Elizabeth.
Besides the hours of training she has put in, the second-year BSc student said several coaches had helped to achieve in the pool.
“When I started high school at Pearson I was blessed to have some phenomenal coaches in Karla Newton, Delaine Christian and Luke Manthe, said Mcleavy.
“I thought I was fit until Delaine showed us exactly the definition of fitness, for which I am forever grateful.”
She added that Manthe, her first-team coach, had provided a new dimension, while she continued her development at Madibaz under Jono Watkins.
“Between Jono and Luke I have had an enormous amount of support, which has helped me in my career.”
Mcleavy said there were several requirements to becoming a success in the water-polo pool, with the most important being having the right attitude and discipline.
“Mentally you must always be willing to listen to your coach and to remember that no matter how good you are there is always something new to learn.
“And then having the discipline to give up things that fall in the same time slot as practices and getting to bed early the night before early training or matches are essential.”
Having turned out for EP representative teams from the U13 age-group, she has also represented national teams at the U21 and U25 levels. For the national U25 squad, Mcleavy competed in the European Union Nations tournament in the Czech Republic last year.
Other awards at the NMBA function went to:
Team award: women’s league winners
Honours: Hannah Reid
Top male swimmer of the year: Alaric Basson
Honours: Alaric Basson (one gold and two silvers at senior nationals); Amica de Jager (open water 5km and 10km women’s champ and open water swimmer of the year); Gareth Vorster (silver medal at senior nationals)