By Hugh Ainsley
23 players from the 2011 and younger age group gathered at a freezing Wishaw Sports Centre (the heating has broken down) on Saturday 10 February for the latest SSBU event. To add to the misery of the cold temperature, two courts were out of action due to rain with a third court starting to leak later in the day.
There were 14 players in the boys singles so there were 4 pools. The 4 seeded players all finished top of their pools and progressed to the A knock-out event.
In the quarter final ¾ seed Kaliq Rafiddi (G&NS) came up against Neeve Lukhi (G&NS). This tussle took 31 minutes and ended in favour of Neev (21-14,13-21,21-7).
In the top semi final, Divyam Goyal (G&NS) took on Highland’s Drew Murdoch who was the top seed. This was a close fought match with Divyam winning 21-18,22-20.
In the other semi final, Neev came up against Aakash Balaji (G&NS) and took just 23 minutes to win this match 21-12,21-11. Neev was on form and went on to win the event in a 31 minute final beating Divyam 21-19,16-21,21-17.
The girls event had 2 pools of 4. The 2 top seeded players made their way safely to the final with Zoe Tait (G&NS) beating Akshara Chavan (G&NS) in a long struggle 21-15, 10-21, 21-15.
Both doubles events were one pool with 4 pairs in the boys event and 3 in the girls. Divyam & Neev paired up to win the boys event but Drew & Kaliq put up a good fight only losing with a score of 21-16,20-22,21-19.
All three matches in the girls event went to 3 sets with honours eventually going to Zoe Dixon & Zoe Tait with Akshara Chavan and Sragvi Mekam finishing in second place.
The next events for SSBU are the Quaichs (school team events). The Primary event will be held at Wishaw on Saturday 24 February and the Secondary events at Scotstoun on Wednesday 28. The Secondary Championships are at Kilmarnock in early March and entries need to be in soon. The link here should get you to the entry page.
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