Badminton Life

Wallwork to be Robertson's New Partner

Former Olympic silver medallist Nathan Robertson will take a fresh look at gold when the Games come to London in 2012 after "upgraded to a younger model" with his new partner.

Robertson, who formed a popular partnership with Gail Emms, has unveiled 21-year-old Jenny Wallwork as his new partner following Emms retirement.

The 31-year-old Robertson and Emms, also 21, had Britain in rapt attention as they went all the way to the final of the Athens Games in 2004, eventually settling for the silver.

He now wants to groom a new partnership and is targeting gold in London in four years time.

Talking to the Press Association, he said: This is a four-year plan for me. I'm probably not going to carry on much past 2012 as I will be slightly too old but for four years' time we've still got so much to look forward to.

"I'm still missing a medal from my cabinet and I'm sure Jenny wouldn't mind a little gold one as well along the way. We've got all that to look forward to so it's going to be a great four years."

Wallwork was given mixed doubles duties by England's head coach Ian Wright. She has played for England nine times and won titles at the Dutch and Scottish Opens.

She has an excellent badminton pedigree with her mother Jill playing in the 1980s and father Brian a leading coach in the country.

"It's very exciting," Wallwork was quoted as saying. "I've got some big shoes to fill after Gail's retired but I'm hoping to put a lot of hard work in and we'll progress quickly.

"I've watched them (Emms and Robertson) a lot and have taken a lot from Gail and how she plays. She's been a big help to me.

"She's just been saying to be confident and to look forward to playing. It's obviously a massive opportunity for me."

Their first outing together as a team will be in next week's Denmark Open Super Series event in Odense, a tournament in which many of the world's top pairs will be competing.

Their first continental target is February's European Team Championships in Liverpool, England.

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