Badminton Life



Young Scots Triumph in Denmark

Aarhus in Denmark may not be the natural tourist attraction that young Scottish people may consider for their holidays but for the young Scottish badminton players who took part in the prestigious Aros Cup, the focus was definitely on enhancing their badminton skills as opposed to sightseeing and taking note of historical events.

Coming up against young quality players from countries such as England, Germany, Sweden, Hungary, Holland, Finland and Norway offered plenty of opportunity to test their skill and mettle against the cream of Europe's young badminton players and the 16 Scottish players who travelled would have taken a lot from the showing.

The Scottish team was an amalgamation of players from the Junior High Performance Squad which is associated with the national team and two teams from Glasgow, the home of sport in Scotland.

Hopes were high for Adam Hall and Josh Neil who had already achieved success at Under 13 level in Britain this year and many observers were watching these players with close interest to see how they would fare against top class continental opposition. Their first match was a rousing success as the pair triumphed in straight sets over Danish opposition but from there on, the games got harder for the Scots duo.

Not that the harder games were enough to derail the pair but it did take three sets in every match for the pair to make their way to the final. The semi-final featured a narrow victory over the Swedish duo of Andreas Norrell and Daniel Ojaar by 6-21, 21-14, 21-19 which proved the boys had tremendous bounce-back ability after a shocking opening set. This mental strength came to the fore again when they won the final by 21-16, 21-17 over Danish duo Peter Correll and Jonas P. Rasmussen.

Hall and Neil also showed that they also had quality in the singles game as they managed to win matches to qualify from the group stages where Hall was defeated by Peter Correll who managed to take some level of revenge for the result of the Boys Doubles event. Josh Neil did manage to make it through to the quarter final stage where he eventually lost to Randolf Dellenback from Italy in an epic encounter by a score of 15-21, 21-17, 21-23. The closeness of the score suggests how tight a match it was and also showed the development of Neil as he had lost to the same player a year previously by a much larger margin.

There was also plenty to cheer from the girl's game with Kirsty Gilmour taking most of the plaudits for winning the Under 15 Singles event where she triumphed over Denmarks Celine Juel by a score of 21-17, 21-14. Gilmour also managed to progress to the quarter final stages of the Mixed Doubles where she and Tim Stranks eventually succumbed to defeat from a Danish duo.

2008 has already seen some commendable performances from Scotland's badminton players and the news that the junior players seem capable of winning as much as the adults would indicate that there is a bright future for Scotland when it comes to badminton.












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