Mount Maunganui's Joe Kayes continues to be a star performer in the world-class Hungarian national league.
Kayes scored five goals to help his Szeged team win the bronze medal in the national league. Szeged were placed first after the nine month regular season but lost their semifinal series to Szolnok and had to refocus to play off for third against Vasas.
Szeged won the first of the best of three series 9-8 at their home pool and travelled to Budapest for the second game, hoping to wrap it up and avoid a third game. With supporters drums beating, horns playing and flags waving madly, Kayes scored after just 31 seconds for Szeged. The game was played at a frantic pace with neither team ever establishing a decent lead. Kayes scored four of his five goals from his usual centre forward position and one from wide of goal.
"It was very cool to watch," said his father Paul Kayes, as he and wife Dorcas had just arrived for a first visit to see their son in his adopted Hungary.
"It was interesting seeing the media at work at water polo at this level, interviewing Joe and a good number of players from both teams after the game."
Kayes has been contacted by the new Hungarian National Men's coach but is weighing up his options. He has another year on his contract but is also looking at options in Australia and with other clubs in Europe.