Sunday 19th February saw the U15 North Midway team tackle the second leg of the fixture, having achieved 5th place in the first leg.
The Team this time was: Jess Allen, Tamsin Betts, Evie Pike and Grace Sherwin for the girls and Danny Beynon, Callum Chapman, Louie Stevenson and Lewis Whyley for the boys.
With a couple of counties having dropped out, the competition was played as a round robin. First up was Lancashire 1 who were lying in 2nd place after the first leg; the team reversed their first leg defeat to win 7-3. Unfortunately the team was unable to match this feat against eventual winners Yorkshire 1, losing 3-7 after some very tight matches which could have gone either way. We then beat Cheshire 10-0 and finished off beating local rivals Notts 7-3 to finish runners up on the day and improving our overall standing to 4th.
A great team effort, particularly considering the inexperience of some of the players.
Also taking place on the weekend of 11th & 12th of February was the last U15 Gold for this year. Representing Team Leics were:
Jess Allen, Tamsin Betts, Eve Durrance, Luke Hoult and Sophie Watson
Both Jess and Sophie earned a return on Sunday, having won their respective singles groups; they were joined by Luke who won through to the second day of the level doubles with his partner Jake Prentice.
Luke and Jake were unfortunate to draw the top seed pair in their semi-final and while they were unable to upset the seeding this time, took home a fantastic bronze medal nonetheless.
In the girls’ singles, both Jess and Sophie set up an all-Leicestershire final, powering past their semi final opponents, Sophie beating Lavigne Leung in straight games and Jess beating Yorkshire’s Lucy Walker this time in 3 games.
The final was always going to be a very difficult match for both girls with both knowing the other’s game so well. It was Jess who managed to hold her nerve this time to win 21-15 21-16 and take home the gold with Sophie winning an excellent silver medal.
Congratulations to all 3 Leicestershire players on their achievements!
The weekend of 11th & 12th of February saw some of there Team Leics girls travelling the length and breadth of the UK in their quest for badminton competition!
On Saturday, Evie Pike & Grace Sherwin made the long trek to Ipswich for the U15 Suffolk Silver event. A successful day’s play saw both take home bronze medals in the level doubles and also the mixed doubles with their respective partners Charlie and Tobias. Evie also enjoyed success in the singles with a 3rd bronze medal.
Meanwhile in more northerly counties Jess Rodgers was flying the flag for Team Leics at the U17 Yorkshire bronze. Having only entered the singles events this time, Jess beat the top seed to progress through to a very close final against Zoe Raiswell where she was just pipped to the silver medal 22-20.
On Sunday it was Tilly Dale’s turn to shine in the U15 Yorkshire bronze. Scooping a bronze medal in the singles, Tilly went one better with her local partner Emily, winning a silver medal as well in the level doubles!
Saturday 4th February was an interesting challenge to get the 3 Dale girls to 3 different tournaments! However, it was well worth the logistical nightmare with all 3 girls winning Gold medals in their respective doubles tournaments:-
Lola won the U10 Derek Meakin doubles event at Whitwick Leisure Centre with her partner Katie Hoult
Tilly won the U14 bronze event in Worcester with Grace Sherwin
Eve won the U17 silver event in Nottingham with Ella Haines
With level doubles playing first it was the girls who managed the first successes for Team Leics with both top seeds Eve & Ella and Izzy & Jess winning through from the group stages. With Eve & Ella having a bye through to the semis, Izzy & Jess had to negotiate a quarter-final match first, which they did with ease.
In the semi finals, Eve & Ella made short work of the #3 seeds Harper & Jong in 2 easy games; Izzy & Jess just fell short of making it an all-Leics final, being pipped by the #2 seeds by a single point with the final game score 16-14. With Leicestershire hopes resting on Eve & Ella in the final, they didn’t disappoint, running out gold medal winners in 3 close games.
The only notable success in singles today came from the boys this time with Harry winning through from his group, before losing out on a place in the quarter-finals in a very tight qualifying match.
With mixed doubles the last event of the day, there were hopes of another Team Leics medal and so it was to be! 3 of the Leics pairs won through from the group stages: Tom C and Eve Dale with their respective partners and Sameer & Sophie. Only Eve and her Lincs partner Ryan were able to progress further in the competition, reaching the final but losing out on the gold this time to #2 seeds Caitlin Harper & Ewen Stephen.
Sunday 5th February and the U16 Shires team made the journey to Lincoln for what we knew was going to be another tough fixture. With Jess Rodgers unable to play after her efforts of the previous day’s U17 Silver in Nottingham left her with a foot injury, Sophie Watson once again stepped in to cover. The team was:-
Sameer Chenia, Harry Clare, Rowan Clark, Joe Goodenough
Jess Allen, Tamsin Betts, Izzy Pike, Sophie Watson
The mixed games up first proved that this was going to be a challenging day; while Joe & Tamsin won easily to 11 and 6, both Harry & Izzy and Rowan & Jess had to fight hard for their wins with both games going to 3. The score going into the singles: Leics 3 – Lincs 1
Next up, singles, which we knew would be especially challenging for the girls and so it was to prove. Neither Jess nor Izzy could manage a win against the strong Lincs #1 & 2 girls although both Tamsin and Sophie managed easy wins against their opponents. The boys were more dominant however, with Sameer, Harry and Joe all recording convincing wins.
With just the level doubles to play, Leicestershire were leading 8 – 4 and only needed 3 wins to take the whole match. While neither Harry & Rowan nor Izzy & Sophie could manage to contain the Lincs 1st pairs, Leicestershire were convincing winners in all the other encounters to leave the final score Leicestershire 14 – Lincolnshire 6.