YOUTH SPORT: Hardye success for famous five

Dorset Echo: HARDYE STARS: Harry Wheeler and Hattie Burnell HARDYE STARS: Harry Wheeler and Hattie Burnell

FIVE Thomas Hardye students have been very successful in their chosen sports.

Hattie Burnell, 14, is a keen water polo player and currently trains with the Blandford junior team and at the Regional Training Centre in Exeter.

She has represented Dorset in water polo for the ladies’ team and girls’ under-16.

Last year she represented the South West in Walsall.

This year she was invited to go to Cardiff for the GB talent trials, ‘Girls 1999’, but unfortunately did not get selected for the second round.

Her next competition is in March/April and she will be playing for Paignton in the Under-16 National Age Group tournament, the preliminary round will be in Walsall and the finals will be held in Manchester. Harry Wheeler is also showing great prospects as a water polo player.

He travelled up to Walsall after being selected from 40 boys to play in the Inter Regional Championships. Representing South West England Under-15s, he won a bronze medal for third best team in the country.

This is excellent preparation to hopefully represent England.

He has been asked to train in the England Talent squad for the Great Britain Under-14 Water polo team.

He next has the National Age Championship preliminaries taking place in Gloucester.

Wheeler trains regularly at Dorchester 1610 Sports Centre, the Exeter Regional Training Centre and Cardiff/GB England Training Camps.

Tara Chittenden has been selected for the under-16 England hockey squad.

After captaining the Wessex Leopards in the national futures cup tournament, she was then picked for NAGS (National Age Group Squad).

Following extensive training at Lilleshall in Shropshire, she has just heard that she has been chosen for the England Squad.

Over the next few months, she will play home and abroad against Holland, Belgium and Ireland and compete in a Four Nations tournament at the end of July.

Kirsty Way competes nationally and internationally for trampoline and DMY (double mini trampoline).

She has recently been accepted into the National Squad for DMT and will soon be trialling for the European Championships in April. Later in the year, she will also be trialling for the World Championships.

Caspar Bailey has been selected for the South West England Under-16 rugby squad.

Unfortunately he has missed two recent training camps due to injury, but he is hoping to be fit for an upcoming training weekend and international festival in March and April.

This will give him the chance to be selected to represent England Under-16 at the end of the festival.

Head of PE at Thomas Hardye, Geraint Hughes, said: “I am very proud and humbled by the performances of these young athletes. This shows what a good cross section of sports our students take part in.

“We also wish Caspar a quick recovery from injury and have no doubt he has the ability to wear the ‘red rose’.

“We also have other performers in many sports achieving county and national recognition.

“This success also reflects the excellent work of our PE staff and the depth of support from the wider Dorchester community who work with us.

“At a time when we are told young people are not interested in sport or exercise, we are proud to say that Thomas Hardye students have a fantastic attitude to sport and PE.

“Our staff consider themselves fortunate to work with such committed young people.

“We have also just heard that Amie Buttle, Fergus Johnson and Ollie Thompson, all of Year 12, have made it through to the English Schools’ cross-country final at Castle Donnington in March.

“This is a fantastic achievement.”

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