I only have very fond and happy memories of my time with H&G Swimming and Water Polo Club. I often reminisce of the old times - particularly at the "real pool" at Henley Beach on Sunday mornings which often extended into the early/late afternoon. As kids it was a great atmosphere and community to be part of.
I left for Canberra in early 1988 and spent 7 years at the AIS, leaving at the end of 1994. I represented Australia at the World Junior Championships in 1989, World Universiade Games in 1991 and 1995 (bronze) and was selected on several Australian Men's Tours playing in tournaments throughout Europe, America and matches in Australia. Since hanging up the swimmers I have been intimately involved with Water Polo at Sydney University where I have been the National League Coach since 1995 (18 years).
Throughout this period I have been able to steer the team to three Championships, three silver and 3 bronze medals, missing the finals only once. There have also been several Olympians,
National Men’s and Junior Representatives that I developed along the way.
Many of the skills and behaviours I have installed in my coaching have had influences from my time at H&G as a kid.
It is hard to put into words but I thoroughly enjoyed my upbringing at H&G.
Peter Bayne's Note:
Damien like Chris Wybrow was a very good swimmer who represented the Club at Interclub until he left for the AIS on a Water Polo scholarship. Damien started his water polo along with a group of Under 15’s from St Michael’s College, the team struggled in the early days as they were playing against much older boys but they stayed together and won both Under 16 and Under 18 State Premierships together. Damien first came to the notice of the National Selectors when he was named in the Australian Junior Men’s team in 1986. Damien made his first senior Australian team in 1992 and represented his country 31 times.