Under 18s

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The 2017-18 season saw Wasps' Under-16s finish third in the league and reaching the finals of both the Sussex Girls Challenge Cup and the League Cup.

It was the first season back in a girls' league for the team, after spending the 2016-17 campaign in the Mid Sussex Youth League, exclusively against boys' teams.

I'm delighted to say we received compliments from all the teams we played on the girls' style of football - we also had six of our team selected to play for Sussex Schools U16s and even hosted one of their representative matches at our Ewhurst training base.

We also won the Overall Behaviour Respect award for our age group (the presentation is pictured). As this was given based on marks from the opposition on the behaviour of players, coaches and parents, it is something we are rightly very proud of.

The 2018-19 season sees last year’s Under-16s jump a year and join the Sussex Under-18s league. The club is trying to smooth the path between junior and senior football - the Under-18s have been training alongside the Ladies reserves, a challenge the girls have enjoyed.

They have played in friendlies alongside their older teammates and some have already been asked to also register for the Ladies teams.

A few players leaving for other ventures have been replaced by new faces - and an old player rejoining after a couple of seasons away. All have settled well and are eager to start the season.

The Under-18s will be looking to complement their league fixtures with a selection of friendlies against teams from other leagues, age groups and counties, with one-time England Schools candidate Chanelle Gainsford again leading the team.

The main aims for the coming season are for the girls to enjoy their football and get used to a more focused style of game, building towards what the club hopes to be a bright and successful future in ladies' football.

My thanks as always to my coaches Ryan Strudwick, Matt Graves and Paul Woodhams. We are always looking for new players, so if you would like to come and meet us, drop us an email - newplayer@crawleywasps.com.