“A fantastic weekend of badminton Bill Neill would be proud of!”
At this year’s 2022 Bill Neil Lanarkshire Open there were 84 players across the 5 disciplines taking part – a record entry with an increase from 61 players for the 2021 event. The event took place on 1st and 2nd October at Larkhall Leisure Centre with a some really great matches throughout the course of the weekend.
It was the Men’s Singles event that kicked off Saturday’s action, with Borders brothers Callum Smith and Tyler Smith battling off in the 1st round with Callum winning 21-12, 21-15. Ganesh Ram Balaji (5/8 seed) managed to overcome No.2 seed Michael McGuire in a 3 set thriller in the quarter finals. It was Smith who progressed to the final on Sunday and taking the title beating Jiayu Lu 21-4, 21-14.
In the Women’s Singles, 2nd seed Basia Grodynska was able to advance to the semi final however was narrowly beaten by 3/4 seed Toni Woods in 3 sets who then up against Sophie Ford in the final with Woods taking the title 21-17, 21-7.
Woods had teamed up with partner Kirsten Berry (No.1 seeds) in the Women’s Doubles event and took the title 21-12, 21-8 in the final against Grodynska and Schubert. Berry was also playing in the Mixed Doubles event, who partnered Robert Dunn who were seeded No.1. They managed to defeat some tough opponents and eventually winning the final against no.2 seeds Mark Mackay and Shona Mackay.
The twin set of titles for Dunn was not meant to be as he battled along with partner Calvin Chan against no.1 seeds Callum Crangle and Kenneth Cheung in the final of the Men’s Doubles, however lost in a 3 set encounter 21-18, 18-21, 21-13 which rounded off a fantastic weekend of badminton Bill Neill would be proud of!
Special mention to Lanarkshire Badminton Group volunteers this includes Frank Turnbull (pictured with winners and runners up above) and Jill Smith on Match Control and Pam Casey and Linda Turnbull who helped run the café over the weekend. Also big thank you Kerrs Bakery in Motherwell who provided various cake trays and thank you to all those who brought home baking which both players and spectators thoroughly enjoyed!
Would also like to highlight the effort made by the BSCO team who provided excellent support for the finals on Sunday afternoon. Their presence always makes the showcase matches feel special to the players and spectators.
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