WPA Rules Review: WPA seeks member feedback on the rules

Why do we need to review the national water polo rules?

FINA rules were updated in 2017 with WPA subsequently publishing its national rule modifications in October 2017. Not all states and clubs have enforced the updated FINA rules with some events adopting ‘local rules’ for both the conduct of the tournament and its eligibility criteria. WPA have made a commitment to the states to undertake a more thorough and consultative process to ensure all stakeholders are engaged.

The rule review aims to clear up the inconsistencies that occur between local, state and national jurisdictions when it come to the implementation of the rules. At times, this has led to confusion and creates challenges for athletes, clubs and event organisers. Along with the introduction of the inaugural Australian Youth Water Polo Championships, it is timely that WPA undertakes a review of the technical rules in conjunction with eligibility rules as well as administrative processes that support implementation.

What will be reviewed?

The review will look at both technical rules and national eligibility rules. The technical rules of the game will include aspects such as; ball and field size, rule modifications and rule interpretations. The review of the national eligibility rules will include; player eligibility, domicile rule, team eligibility, athlete draft and tournament entry requirements.

Who will be affected by the national rules review?

All levels of water polo will be affected by the national rule review and the final rules that will be implemented after the consultation process has been completed. The national rules will be introduced to all WPA age level, club and state events. The rules as adopted by state associations will flow down into state level competitions.

What will rule review process look like?

There will be two rounds of consultation over a ten-week period where all clubs and individual members will have an opportunity to provide feedback through their state associations. Members can provide feedback directly to the state via the template provided – click here.

How can I have my say?

You can have a say through your state affiliated association. All feedback must be submitted via email to your state association by no later than 5:00pm June 29, 2018.

WPA national rules review – Consultation timeline and process

Dates Rule review period Process
June 8 – June 29
(3 Weeks)
Round 1 all member consultation
  • WPA releases consultation paper to the individual members and the SSO’s. This will be in the form of an excel document and will include timeline and instructions.
  • Rule review consultation will be advertised on WPA website and social media platforms.
  • Individual members can provide feedback on each specific rule directly to the SSO.
  • SSO forms a collective position on each specific rule based on their member feedback.
  • SSO prepares one document to submit to WPA
June 29 – July 6
(1 week)
Round 1 all member feedback due back to WPA
  • SSO’s make their submission to WPA by Friday June 29
July 6 – July 13
(1 week)
Consolidation of feedback by WPA
  • WPA consolidates the feedback from the SSO’s and prepares a draft paper with proposed changes.
July 13 – July 27
(2 weeks)
Round 2 state member consultation
  •  WPA releases consolidation paper back to the states
  • A second round of open consultation occurs at state level
  • The SSO forms their final position on each of the specific rule
  • State prepares final document for WPA
July 27 – August 3
(1 week)
Round 2 all state feedback due back to WPA
  • SSO’s make their submission to WPA by Friday July 27
August 3 – August 10 (1 week) Finalisation of feedback by WPA
  • WPA consolidates all feedback and forms a collective position on all of the rules
  • Finalised rules are signed off by board, HP team and legal counsel
  • Final rules are pre-released to the SSO’s with rationale documentation
August 10 – August 17 (1 week) Release new rules to members
  •   WPA releases new rules on website and social media platforms


How to have your say:

  1. Download the WPA Rules review excel template from WPA website – click here.
  2. Edit the document with your proposed changes and feedback
  3. Once complete, email document back to your local state association