Sutton water polo star set for Olympic test

Wimbledon Guardian: Matt Holland has been confirmed for Team GB Matt Holland has been confirmed for Team GB

Sutton's top water polo player had two reasons to celebrate on Friday after finding out he would be competing in front of a home crowd at this year's Olympics.

Matt Holland celebrated his 23rd birthday on Friday (June 22) on the day he was confirmed in the Team GB water polo squad for July's games.

The former Sutton Grammar School pupil said: "This means everything to me. It is the biggest thing I have ever done".

Holland said he was "pretty nervous" before the Olympic squad was announced.

"There was a level of nerves, but I was still quite confident of getting a place."

The former Sutton and Cheam Water Polo club player has spent the last month's training at the squad's base in Manchester in preparation for the games.

But he has been at home in Carshalton this week enjoying a week away from the pool.

"The team is based in Manchester and the crowds are great up there, but the atmosphere in London will be ten times as good," he added.

Holland has been in France this season playing in Marseilles after a spell in Holland with PSV Eindhoven.

"I enjoyed this year in France more, the scenery was better and it has a really good professional league, but it is still not as good as the leagues in eastern Europe."

And it is the teams from the east that Holland expects to be favourites come his Olympic debut. "Hungary, Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro are all very strong teams and will be the ones to beat in London. Realistically, we will be the lowest ranked team competing, but with the home crowd behind us, you never know what could happen."

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