Swedish Youth Games 2023: Round Up

By Craig Robertson

The Swedish Youth Games took place in Malmo from 16th – 19th November with the u13/15 Team and Individual event and also the U17 Badminton Europe Circuit event.  Players competed in the 20-court Malmo Badminton Centre over the three days in an event that attracted players from throughout Europe.

Scotland presented teams of eight players, 4 male and 4 female into the U13/15 Team and individual whilst the U17 event saw seven Scottish players competing in the individuals.

For many of the players, this was their first time competing at this level.  Competing against players from all over Europe was challenging and saw Scottish players competing and winning matches throughout the event.  It was clear that the Danish, Swedish and French teams were stronger however this did not stop our players giving maximum effort in both team and individual events even when up against opponents of a higher calibre and with more experience.

The first new experience from a team perspective was against France, when at 3 matches each, the U15 team had to play a deciding “Golden Set” which was a chosen discipline up to 11 points only.  Scotland lost out 11-9 in a close match which demonstrated that Scotland can compete and challenge, even in such a high-pressured play off match.  The team support throughout was exceptional and gave our players a true sense of pride to be representing Scotland whilst experience other team approaches to team events.

Individually a number of players competed with high level opponents and at time almost winning sets and matches against much higher seeded players in each age group.

In total, players gained experience during 81 matches at this level.  The following players reached quarter final stages:

Singles:                Jaagruti Mannem, Tushar Senthilajaram, Qing Yang Xia and Shannon Leslie.

Doubles:             Qing Yang Xiao/Ingrid Wang, Alfie Martin/Arnav Saraswat, Dylan Zia/Melrick Dsouza and Lewis Smith/Ewan Stewart

Results:   U13 Team           U15 Team           U13 /U15 Individual         U17 Individual

U13  –    Elona Kennedy, Arisha Manir, Jaagruti Mannem, Emily Jobson, Calum Tsang, Dylan Jia, Meldrick Dsouza and Yingfan Wang

U15 – Qing Yang Xiao. Ingrid Wang, Tushara Senthilajaram, Thenoo Anamalai, Alfie Martin, Arnav Saraswat, Max Macabe and Charlie Junnor

U17 – Pranavi Singh, Shannon Leslie, Gemma Foulis, Lewis Smith, Callum Jack, Ewan Stewart and Fraser Banks.

Lena Robertson (U13), Julie Hogg (U15), Bruce Flockhart (U17), Craig Robertson (Team Manager/Assistant Coach)

“Scotland’s participation in the Swedish Youth Games was a first in terms of such a large contingent travelling to Malmoe.  With mixed levels of experience out with our country, all players showed that they were able to compete and challenged their foreign opponents in all matches.  The overall team spirit was exceptional, hopefully this has provided the opportunity not only to compete in Europe but to witness players of a much higher level competing and wining internationally.  I have no doubt that this competition and experience will motivate our players to compete and be successful in the future.”