Day One – Friday 28/04/2017
England came away with the team victory at the 2017 Junior Quadrangular on Friday evening. The English team made a strong start to the tournament with a 7-2 victory over hosts Ireland. England made quick work of Wales with a 9-0 win before playing the deciding match against Scotland. Scotland started strongly taking a 2-0 lead after the teams of Kenneth Cheung/Callum Smith & Jamie Gunn/Michael McGuire claimed victories in the boys' doubles. England responded however, winning both the girls' doubles and the mixed doubles to take a 3-2 lead. With the tie lying in the balance, the spectators were treated to a magnificent match between Michael McGuire and Neil Bhabuta. Michael was able to take the first game 23-21. With not much between the players, every point was going to be crucial. Neil was able to take control of the second game as Michael seemed to fatigue, with a 21-18 win. This set up an enthralling final game. Michael and Neil traded points with some brilliant rallies. Neil was able to get a lead close to the end and hold off Michael to take the game 22-20. Using this momentum, England were able to win another two 3 set games to close off victory and win the fixture 7-2.
Day Two - Saturday 29/04/2017
Saturday’s action saw players compete in the singles and mixed doubles categories. At the end of play the singles category would see only four players remain in the boys' and girls' categories. In the boys' division Alex Green, Michael McGuire, Callum Smith and Neil Bhabuta all made it through to Sunday’s semi-finals. Michael, Callum and Neil all qualified for the semi-finals with straight set wins, whilst Alex Green beat Ireland’s Peter McDonald in an extremely exciting encounter. Alex managed to beat Peter in three sets winning the final set 26-24. Sunday will also see Eleanor Butler take on Lisa Curtin in the girls' singles semi-final, whilst Gauri Shidhaye will play Alice Campbell in the second semi-final. The girls' singles division was very competitive and this has set up two exciting semi-finals.
After lunch, players competed in the mixed doubles. Callum Stewart and Alice Campbell made the final after winning two three set matches in the competition. In their semi-final, Callum and Alice managed to overcome an excellent team in Alex Green and Estelle Van Leeuwen. The English pair of Alex and Estelle won the first set 21-17. This first set loss kick started Callum and Alice who won some compelling rallies and gained valuable momentum in the game, winning the second set 21-18. The final set could not be tighter with both teams exchanging leads throughout the set. The Scots managed to hold their nerve however and come away with 22-18 victory. The Scottish pair will play in the final against Joseph Ball and Lisa Curtin who themselves came through a very tight encounter. Joseph and Lisa won their game 22-20 and 23-21 over fellow English competitors Cholan Kayan and Holly Williams.
On Saturday evening Badminton Ireland hosted the competition dinner at the Clayton Hotel. This gave the teams a chance to socialise with the other teams and relax before the final day of competition. After the meal, England were awarded their team competition Gold medals from Badminton Ireland President, Betty Thompson.
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More to follow……..