On 18 May 2019 the Brussels Mannekenfish participated in the Belgian Pride celebrating diversity and inclusiveness in all sports, not only in waterpolo. Promoting the departure of the Tour de France in the city from 1st till 7th July, the Mannekenfish rode their bikes wearing a rainbowed version of the famous 'Maillot Jaune' and brand new matching waterpolo caps!
The day started with a bike ride from the Atomium to the city center, spreading love and happiness along the streets, with iconic claps and choreography at the street lights and on the main squares of the city.
In the afternoon, the Mannenkenfish marched with pride, making their way into the crowd on their bikes as well as they are used to do in the pool. Their bright colours and sexy speedos did not remain unnoticed by the 100 000 participants to the event.
It was the priority of season 2017-2018 : performing well and having the best group atmosphere at the Paris 2018 Gay Games. And we did both!
The Mannekenfish reaching the top 3 in the world with the bronze medal in the competitive tournament, beating the Toronto Triggerfish 7-6 in the 'small final'. The Mannekenfish almost made it to the finals after a 9-9 against San Francisco Tsunamis, one of the best teams in the world. But the Californians were stronger in the penalty shootouts.
In the recreational league, the second Mannekenfish team, the Brussels Sprouts, showed the world that they really improved their level. They were ranked 10th after a defeat in the 8th finals against Brisbane.
After the water polo competition, all the players performed together for the famous Pink Flamingo competition. The performance recounting the birth of the Brussels Mannekenfish amazed the jury which rewarded the team with the prize for Best Costumes.
Beyond all these achievements in and around the pool, the 25 players engaged in the competition enjoyed 10 days of great team spirit, building connections with players and teams from all around the world!
We thank visit.brussels for the support and hope we made everyone proud!
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The Brussels Mannekenfish got naked again to offer you a new edition of their famous calendar. For 2018 the objective of the team was to illustrate the core values of the team: friendship, fun, team spirit and openness.
This new edition of the calendar aims to support our participation to the Gay Games X in Paris next August. About 15 000 athletes from all over the word are expected to join the event. In the water polo category, more than 450 players across 36 teams have already signed up. Participating in the Gay Games is our main focus this season. We will train hard to reach the gold. But what matters most are the bonds we've created with each other. Let's show everybody that Brussels is a place where people know how to have fun!
To get your copy of the calendar, click here!
On August 25th the Mannekenfish took part to a summer tournament organised by our mates from the Manchester Sharks Water Polo team.
They wittingly scheduled the tournament during the fabulous Manchester Pride weekend in a way that all the brave participants could enjoy a crazy and fun weekend after an hard sporty day in the pool. What a blast we had !
The Mannekenfish came along with one big team of 16 players enrolled in the competitive category.
Here below are the results of the 7 games we played during the tournament :
Brussels Mannekenfish 14 - 4 Paris Aquatique B
Brussels Mannekenfish 7 – 4 Paris Aquatique A
Brussels Mannekenfish 7 – 4 London Orca A
Brussels Mannekenfish 7 – 6 Amsterdam Waterproof
Manchester Sharks A 4 – 6 Brussels Mannekenfish
Brussels Mannekenfish 11 – 3 Paris Aquatique A
Manchester Sharks 5 – 8 Brussels Mannekenfish
You’re at ease in the water?
You’d like to play a ball sport with teammates?
Look no further: our LGBT/LGBT friendly team is seeking new players.
Come and try it during our 2017 early season bootcamp!
The Brussels Mannekenfish created the buzz on Facebook with a video aimed at advertising the Eurochamps Brussels 2016 organised by the team on 28-31 October. The players revisited the last promotional video Kenzo World, directed by Spike Jonze and starring Margaret Qualley with an original track by Sam Spiegel & Ape Drums feat. The video posted on the Facebook page of the team quickly went viral, reaching 100k views and 1000 shares in only 48 hours.
The video did not go unnoticed by the group Kenzo. The Director General of Kenzo Perfume, Patricia Tranvouëz, congratulated the team for the way the Mannekenfish showed that they 'dare to see the world their own way'. The director letter came with some presents for all the member involved. These attentions definitely boosted the moral of the team, a few days before the competition!
On 5 August 2016 the Brussels Mannekenfish were taking part in the summer tournament organised by Waterproof Amsterdam. They won their 5 first games and their semifinal. They met their hosts for the final game that resulted in a win for Waterproof Amsterdam and a silver medal - or more exactly a silver clog - for the Brussels Mannekenfish.
The competition started with a remake of the final of the previous tournament against Paris Aquatique 1. The Mannekenfish ended up victorious (5-3). They were then confronted to the new team of Waterproof Amsterdam that resulted in a second victory (6-0). They won their third game against the mixed team of Manchester/Active Company (4-1). The Mannekenfish finally secured the first place of their group by winning the two games against London Orca 3 ( 6-1) and London Orca 1 (5-1).
In semi-final, London Orca 2 offered a good resistance but the Mannekenfish managed to keep their ground and the confrontation resulted with another win 4-2. The last game against the A team of the Waterproof Amsterdam promised to be tough and it was. The hosting team took the lead and the Mannekenfish did not manage to overcome the situation. The Brussels team ended the day in silver.
On 15 May, Brussels Mannekenfish maintained its European leadership in inclusive water polo by reaching the first step of the podium at the International Paris Tournament. For the first time, the Brussels Mannekenfish Junior team was introduced on the international scene reaching an honorable 13th position. All the players celebrated the victory as one, united by a team spirit stronger than ever.
23 players in two teams
As new players joined the team in September 2015 and January 2016, 23 Mannekenfish joined the Tournoi International de Paris in May 2016. For the first time outside Belgium, Brussels would be represented with two teams at an international tournament. The more experienced players joined the Brussels Mannekenfish while the more recent ones formed Brussels Mannekenfish Junior. The team would play in two different leagues.
'sans faute' for the experienced players
After their victory in Paris in 2014 and in London in October 2015, the Brussels Mannekenfish were expected to run the show in Paris. The two first games against the Copenhagen Mermates (5-1) and the Raies Menteuses -Paris AquaHomo (5-0) confirmed the potential of the team. However, the game against the Moules Bites - Cercle de Natation de Paris (4-1) ended with a bitter-sweet taste with the injury of the Mannekenfish captain, Philippe de Wulf, resulting in his withdrawal for the rest of the tournament. Nevertheless, the team was eager to show that its spirit was still high and finished the first part of the competition with three additional victories against the Chatons - Paris Aquatique (6-0), the Mean Girls - London Orca (6-0) and the Brut - London Orca (6-1). With six victories, the Brussels Mannekenfish were one step away from the top of the podium.
A promising start for the junior team
For their first participation in an international tournament, the Mannekenfish Junior faced a great challenge. The battle was fierce against the Frog Princess of AquaHomo but not successful (1-2). The second game against Gay Swim Amsterdam resulted in a draw (2-2), with a mythic goal from the Mannekenfish Junior goalie. The ShootingCocks - London Orca surpassed the Juniors (0-11) and Active Company also claimed the victory (1-5). The Juniors found in Les Cadettes from Paris Aquatique a strong opponent but let the victory pass once more (0-1). The Mobydicks also mastered their game (0-11). Despite fierce battles, the Brussels Mannekenfish Junior unfortunately ended up the first part of the tournament without victories but the tournament was not other yet.
Succes in the finals
The Juniors were the first ones to play their final against the Mean Girls. Months of practice, high spirit and concentration resulted in the first victory of the team (5-0) securing the 13th position. But the ranking did not mattered to them. They showed throughout the tournament that they were able to play together and succeed, opening the way for future victories.
The tension was higher for the Mannekenfish who were to meet the Mobydicks from Paris Aquatique on their ground. The game ended up being physically demanding on both sides. The Mannekenfish took the lead and maintained it at high price during the first half. After the break, they managed to get ahead without the Mobydicks being able to catch up. After a fierce battle, they reached the gold medal (8-6) for the second time in a row at a European inclusive water polo tournament.
On Saturday 27 February, the Brussels Mannekenfish welcomed players from Paris Aquatique for a friendly game. After partying the night before, most of the players needed some time to warm up in the pool. At 6.30pm David started assuming the difficult task of referee and the game was on.
Each team took the opportunity to test its own tactics and goals were scored on both sides with no one paying attention to the results. Our guests from Paris discovered the difficulty of playing in a pool having a shallow part. It was hard for some of them not to stand! As the players wanted more, the game ended up having the original format of 5x8 minutes.
After the game, the Mannekenfish introduced their guests to Belgium cuisine as everyone shared a copious dinner at the Restobières. The most courageous ones continued the night with drinks in Pink Street and a vist to Maman.
The Mannekenfish thank all the players from Paris for their visit and are looking forward to meeting them again at the Tournois International de Paris in May!
After Bronze in 2013 in Amsterdam and Silver in 2014 in Brussels, the Mannekenfish reached Gold in London on Halloween for the 2015 edition of the European Champagne Tournament. The competition was fierce all day long. The final battle against London Orca A reached a climax with an intense penalty session (3-1) due to a draw 2-2 after the time limit.
Before London Orca A, the Brussels Mannekenfish had to play six games in order to reach the final. It started well at 10 this Saturday morning with a victory 7-0 against Manchester B. The second match did not start well for Brussels with Paris AquaHomo leading 2-0. However the Mannekenfish recovered their concentration and ended up winning 7-3. The third game against London Orca Chariots was also successful ( 6-1).
In the meantime, Paris Aquatique A and Amsterdam ended their match with a draw putting additional pressure. The Mannekenfish knew then that they had at least two very competitive games ahead. Although Paris Aquatique A offered a strong resistance, the Mannekenfish fought harder ending up with another win 4-0. The next game against Lesbica the She-Orca concluded with a fifth victory (7-0).
For their last game, the Brussels Mannekenfish would meet their Nemesis. The 2014 champions that defeated them in Brussels: Amsterdam. They wanted revenge. Holding their ground, pressing in defense, preventing any opening for their opponents, taking advantage of the opportunities, the Mannekenfish succeeded beyond their expectations winning the game 6-0. Six games, six victories. But there was still one to come to reach gold.
The final game against London Orca A started well for Brussels, the Mannekenfish leading 2-0. But London would not let the victory slip away, especially as they were playing at home. The Orcas fought back, reaching 2-2. Despite an intense struggle, no team managed to score and the winner would be known after a penalty session.
It started wrong for Brussels with a first miss, while London scored. The silence in the Crystal Palace was total each time a player would shoot. Tension was rising. Then the Brussels goalie stopped one, two and three attempts from London while the Mannekenfish scored! After months of intense training, one day of hard competition, and seven victorious games, the Brussels Mannekenfish could finally rejoice. This year it was gold!