The West

Young guns set to make a splash
Bound for glory: Joel Swift, Eddie Slade, Zoe Arancini and Glencore Ralph. Picture: Simon Santi/ The West Australian

For most of us, this weekend's water polo matches between Australia, China and Croatia will be a unique opportunity to see international competition at the highest level.

But for four West Australians, it will hopefully prove to be the springboard to a successful 2013 that includes national selection and a world championship.

The matches are part of the inaugural Aquatic Super Series in Perth.

On Friday night, the Australian women's team will play China, who they beat in the quarter finals of the London Olympics after penalties.

And the men will play reigning Olympic champions Croatia on Saturday afternoon at Challenge Stadium.

For Glencora Ralph, 24, it will be the first taste of international action since winning a bronze medal with the Australian team at the Olympics.

"Winning bronze was amazing and I am looking forward to playing for Australia again as we seek to earn more success at the world championships in Barcelona in July," the Curtin University-trained dental therapist said.

Zoe Arancini, 21, was the first reserve for the Olympic team but did not get a trip to London last year. But retirements and her continuing good form have earned the 21-year-old a place in the team.

"I'm looking forward to playing China," she said. "They are a very strong team and will be looking for revenge after the Olympics."

Joel Swift, 22, and Eddie Slade, 21, have been on the periphery of the Australian team and will be on a training camp this week to push for selection.

The West Australian

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