Francesca realises her dream

Masham Water Polo player Francesca Clayton.
Masham Water Polo player Francesca Clayton.

WATER polo player Francesca Clayton was part of the women’s team that narrowly missed out on fifth place

The 22 year old, who lives at Colsterdale near Masham has began her career at Bedale Swimming and Water Polo Club when she was eight, had said taking part in the Olympics was her dream.

A Bedale High School pupil, Francesca started her water polo career at Bedale Sharks, Catterick Water Polo Club and Harrogate Shortwalkers Water Polo Club. She then trained with Sedgefield 75 Swim club and Sunderland water polo.

Francesca played national league for Harrogate until she moved to the high performance centre in Manchester at 17. She then signed up with Liverpool and sat her A-levels a year early.

She is the most capped junior player in the country, with 81 caps and has currently 132 GB junior and senior caps. She played in the European Junior Championships in 2006, 2007, 2008, and seniors in 2009 to 2012.

Francesca said her greatest achievement before being picked for the Olympics was beating Greece in the 2011 World League .