The SSBU were catering for the younger players on Saturday 29 October with the 2011 Age Group Tournament.
This time there were 15 boys and 8 girls. The seeding proved quite accurate for the boy’s singles with the four seeded players reaching the semis and the 2 top seeds making it to the final, albeit with 3 set victories in each semi. The final was between Melrick Dsouza from Edinburgh and Jamie Kemp from Cumbria – who is a regular at SSBU events proving just too strong for Melrick with a 21-17, 21-18 victory.
The girls event started out with 3 pools of 3 but one player was a late withdrawal, notification just arriving as the event was starting. Top seed Emily Jobson did get through to the A knock-out but suffered a defeat 21-12 to unseeded Arisha Manir who impressed at only 8 years old! Emily lost to local girl Elona Kennedy in the quarter final. Elona progressed to the final where she came up against Arisha who had taken out number 2 seed Akshara Chavan in the other semi-final. Arisha is a player to watch out for in the future and went on to take the title with a 21-12, 21-10 victory over Elona.
Both doubles events were played as a single pool with 5 pairs in the boy’s event and 3 pairs in the girls. In the boys event the last match was between the 2 top seeds where Jamie Kemp paired up with Calum Tsang (Scotstoun) to take on Maoyan Li & Neev Lukhi (both Scotstoun).
Jamie likes to play long 3 set games and managed to achieve the double with a 21-17, 19-21, 21-16 victory in 36 minutes – the second longest game of the day- the time beaten only by his semi-final 45-minute game in the semi-final of the singles. For the girls doubles Emily and Elona paired up to win the event with victories over Ana Ballard & Akshara Chavan and Zoe Dixon & Zoe Tait.
All players enjoyed the event and are looking forward to playing again in the spring.
Senior Inter Area
On Sunday 30 October, the older players were in action in the senior inter area at Penicuik.
Unfortunately, there were only three teams taking part and with the Edinburgh and Glasgow teams both gaining 8-2 victories over Lanark there was an exciting final between Glasgow and Edinburgh.
Glasgow took an early lead by winning both Mixed Doubles but the lead was short lived as 3 singles victories followed for the Edinburgh team. At this stage 6 rubbers were on court at the same time with the first boys single between Josh Taylor and Theo Johnston still on court. This match had gone to 3 ends so while it was still in progress 3 of the four level doubles went on to court. Theo eventually made the score 4-2 in favour of Edinburgh with a victory taking 41 minutes of court time.
Viha Raman and Deepti Vijayakumar gained another point for Edinburgh with a victory over Nuria Clowes & Katie Stewart but Glasgow managed to win the other 3 doubles giving a 5 all tie. This final was level on sets as well, but Glasgow retained their title on countback. Another fantastic day of badminton and it would be great to see more teams involved.
The next event is the Intermediate Inter Area in 2 weeks’ time and there will be 4 teams involved.