Jerome Gabarretta has announced his retirement as a waterpolo player after a long distinguished career.
The Sliema ASC player has been a key figure for Sliema Aquatic Sports Club in the last few years and was also a regular member of the Malta waterpolo national team, featuring for the team in four European Championship finals.
“I have decided to close a long and important chapter of my life, retiring from waterpolo – a sport to which I’ve dedicated so much to and that has given me so much in return,” Gabarretta wrote on his social media.
“Waterpolo and Sliema have been so much more than just a sport and a club. They have given me lifelong friends, cherished childhood memories, role models, mentors and team-mates who I consider brothers.
“The sport encouraged me to step out of my comfort zone, commit to self-improvement, and approach everything with passion and consistency. It has also granted me the honour of playing alongside and against some of the sport’s finest athletes.”
Gabarretta said that he felt priviliged to be named captain of the team in the last year and paid special tribute to former Sliema coach Beto, who passed away earlier this year.
“In my last year I have also had the privilege of captaining this club and team which are so dear to me,” Gabarretta said.
“We went through some truly difficult times, which we faced together, creating a deep bond that will unite us forever. Beto you will always hold a special place in our hearts.”
Gabarretta ended his message by thanking all coaches, players and administrators who helped him throughout the career and promised to continue supporting the team from the stands.
On their part, Sliema ASC paid tribute to Gabarretta.
“The club would like to announce that Captain Jerome Gabaretta has decided to call it a day on his water polo career as a player,” the waterpolo club said in a statement.
“Jerome started playing water polo at the age of 11 with Sliema. He debuted with the senior team in 2005, at the age of 16, and went on to play 17 seasons with the first team. “In 2022, Jerome became Sliema captain, a role which he was very proud of. Jerome had a decorated career with the Blues, winning 16 honours, including two summer leagues, five Knock Outs and five winter leagues. In 2019 he was voted the Premier league player of the year. Jerome also represented Malta for 14 years and took part in 3 European championships.
“The club would like to thank Jerome for his many years of commitment, loyalty and dedication, and wish him all the best for his next chapter.”
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