Both teams from Cornwall had a fantastic start to the season in the first round of matches in the inter-counties championships at the weekend.
The 1st team, playing in Bristol, were up against Gloucestershire and West Glamorgan, with players coming from all over Cornwall, joined by exiles from Bristol and Birmingham.
In the first match of the day, the men’s singles got off to a great beginning with fine wins for county champion Tyler Sillifant as well as Milo Semonin, although James Whetter lost his game in 3 ends to a fast young opponent. The women’s singles were split, with one win for Gloucestershire and one for Cornwall’s Amy Polglase.
Milo in action below.
Both men’s doubles pairs struggled against strong opponents, Ross Lashbrook and Richard Townsend plus Guy Michell and James losing in two ends, as did Jo Philp and Bronwen Wotton in the women’s doubles. Honour was restored by Amy and Emily James winning their doubles in a tight three ender, to make the match poised at 5-4 to Gloucestershire going into the mixed.
Cornwall needed both mixed games to take the match, and sure enough both pairs obliged, Ross and Jo comfortably beat an experienced pair, with Jo showing sublime touches at the net and dominant serving, Guy and Bronwen finished the match in style, never looking troubled, to give the jubilant team and supporters their first victory of the season at 6 games to 5.
Players and spectators in Bristol.
The next match followed in the afternoon against fellow Celts West Glamorgan, and once again the Cornish boys were victorious in the singles, taking all 3 games in two ends. The girls were up against two strong players and both lost fairly comfortably.
From then on in, the Cornwall players didn’t look back, and stormed to wins in all the men’s and women’s doubles, leaving the two mixed partners to clean up at the end, and take the match 9-2 and finish an excellent day’s badminton and a winning start to the season.
1st team – Tyler Sillifant, Milo Semonin, James Whetter, Guy Michell, Ross Lashbrook, Richard Townsend, Emily James, Amy Polglase, Jo Philp, Bronwen Wotton, with manager Brian Hannibal.
Cornwall’s 2nd team had taken the long trip to Bournemouth for their first matches of the season, and also had a storming start- beating Dorset and Wiltshire along the way.
Their first match against Dorset, saw them win 4 out of 5 singles, all the men’s doubles and one women’s, and both mixed doubles to give a comfortable 9-2 victory.
The second game was much closer against Wiltshire with the team losing 4 out of 5 singles, then winning all the doubles to make it 5-4 going into the mixed and needing only one more game for victory. Losing the first mixed game meant that it was all on Tom Lyle and Vicki Thomas, and they duly won in 2 ends to give the team a memorable victory and a clean sweep for Cornwall.
2nd team – Sam Spencer, Tom Lyle, Jack Dyer, Tony Clark, Curnow Bascombe, Sean Havis, Amelia Burrell, Vicki Thomas, Amy Cox, Isabel Victoria-Martinez.
Both teams play their next round of matches in January, with training sessions in-between plus the under 21 Cornwall Championships on December 18th at Polkyth Leisure Centre – spectators welcome.
64 badminton players from all over Cornwall, Plymouth and mid Devon, gathered at the 8 court Sir Ben Ainslie Sports Centre in Truro at the weekend to take part in Cornwall Badminton Association’s latest Bonanza.
The idea of Badminton Bonanza tournaments is to give both social players and those who play league badminton a chance to try out and develop their skills against different players. The many regulars were joined this time by some very welcome new faces, some playing in a tournament for the first time, as the Bonanza goes from strength to strength, with any profits going towards developing badminton in Cornwall.
This year’s tournament at Truro was another great success, with some close fought battles in all the 5 different disciplines and a great day of badminton.
In the social events there were some closely contested matches, with St Austell’s Sanaa Roff winning a hat trick of titles, as the only woman singles player, then teaming up with fellow St Austell players Joanna Southey in the women’s doubles, and visiting Malaysian Qing Da Soon to win the mixed with runners up Martin Penney and Marnie Boston from Redruth. The men’s singles final was won by Luke Jannaway from Penzance, who beat Redruth’s Russell Tucker, and in the men’s doubles an all St Austell match saw Ashley Southey and Mohammed Dulal prove too strong for David Head and Chris McCarthy.
Left to right, Gary Braunton, Stuart Larter, Jo Southey, Sanaa Roff, Joan Bontoft, Pam Martindale, Mohammed Dulal, Ashley Southey, Karen Parish, Michelle Wylde, John Zarb, Ryan Lambourne, Debbie Blight, Kay Bossenger.
Runners up in the social women’s doubles, Pam Martindale and Joan Bontoft.
Left to right, Luke Jannaway, Qing Da Soon and Sanaa Roff, Marnie Boston and Martin Penney.
Left to right, Stuart Larter, Kay Bossenger, Qing Da Soon, Sanaa Roff, Marnie Boston, Martin Penney, Debbie Blight, Gary Braunton
In the league events, the final of the day was the men’s singles, which was an exciting, tense affair between last year’s winner Tony Wong from St Ives, and the young, skilful Qing Da Soon. After some breath-taking rallies Tony finally emerged triumphant with a very close score of 21-19. The men’s doubles had seen two very close semi-finals but in the final the pair from Pool, Gary Braunton and Stuart Larter were just too quick and powerful for Plymouth’s John Zarb and Ryan Lambourne. The mixed doubles final had the partnership playing against each other, with Gary pairing up with Debbie Blight, and Stuart with Kay Bossenger in an all Tecans club match, with the skill of Stuart and Kay winning in the end.
Left to right, Qing Da Soon and Tony Wong, Stuart Larter and Kay Bossenger, Gary Braunton and Debbie Blight
League men’s singles – winner Tony Wong, runner up Qing Da Soon
Social men’s singles - winner Luke Jannaway, runner up Russell Tucker
Social ladies’ singles – winner Sanaa Roff
League men’s doubles – winners Stuart Larter/Gary Graunton, runners up John Zarb/Ryan Lambourne
League ladies’ doubles – winners Kay Bossenger/Debbie Blight, runners up Karen Parish/Michelle Wylde
Social men’s doubles – winners Ashley Southey/Mohammed Dulal, runners up David Head/Chris McCarthy
Social ladies doubles – winners Sanaa Roff/Joanna Southey, runners up Joan Bontoft/Pam Martindale
League mixed doubles – winners Stuart Larter/Kay Bossenger, runners up Gary Braunton/Debbie Blight
Social mixed doubles – winners Qing Da Soon/Sanaa Roff, runners up Martin Penney/Marnie Boston
Cornwall’s top stars made their way to Polkyth Leisure Centre at the weekend for two days of quality badminton in the annual County Championships. 51 players from all across Cornwall, including 20 under 18 year olds, took part to find this year’s champions in singles and doubles. It was very much a family affair in some events, with the three Sillifant brothers from Launceston and Truro’s three Dyer brothers plus the two Bailey sisters taking part, alongside some other very promising juniors from Cornwall Youth Badminton on show taking on the established competitors.
In the men’s singles three of the top four seeds made it through to the semi-finals, although Chris Glasson narrowly lost to Sam Spencer in a tight quarter final. Tyler Sillifant, the defending champion, cruised through to the final, to once again meet his older brother Liam in a repeat of last year’s match. Liam had had a harder passage, with two closely fought previous rounds to narrowly beat Ross Lashbrook and James Whetter. The final was once again a thrilling match with no quarter given, but in the end Tyler’s speed around the court and consistency won through in two close ends, and he retained his crown.
Men’s singles champion Tyler Sillifant on right with runner up Liam Sillifant.
The women’s’ singles were dominated by exciting young players, with over half of the entrants under 16. Top seed Johanna Philp from Port Isaac was beaten in the semis by Falmouth’s Emily James, and in the other half of the draw, number two seed, 15-year-old Amelia Burrell from Camborne lost to 13-year-old Cara Collins from Liskeard in an epic battle. Cara then lost her semi-final to 15-year-old Ellie Reed from the same town, for Ellie to reach the final for the first time. The last match was a close, tense affair which went the distance with three tight ends of attacking power and speed around the court, eventually won by the more experienced Emily James for the third time in her badminton career.
On the left women’s singles champion Emily James, with runner up Ellie Reed
Saturday’s final event was the women’s doubles, contested by 8 pairs, and again the top two seeds made it through to the final relatively comfortably. Johanna and Amelia were paired against Camborne’s Kellen Moore and Amy Polglase, and Jo and Amelia’s power and precision comfortably won in two ends to take the title this year.
Women’s doubles champions Jo Philp and Amelia Burrell on left, with runners up Amy Polglase and Kellan Moore
The next day the players once again filled the hall, and gave the large watching crowd more excellent badminton thrills and spills in the men’s and mixed doubles competitions.
A big entry of 17 pairs in the mixed saw the top four seeds progress to the semi-finals, with a new pairing of Ross Lashbrook and Isabel Victoria Martinez doing well, particularly in the quarter finals against Sam Spencer and Amelia Burrell. They then had a well fought three ender against number two seeds Guy Michell of St Austell and Vicki Thomas from Penzance and came out winners to reach the final, against top seeds James Whetter and Jo Philp. James and Jo’s accuracy and tight net play saw them take the title in two ends against the battling Ross and Isabel, to once again be crowned champions.
From the right mixed doubles champions James Whetter and Jo Philp with runners up Ross Lashbrook and Isabel Victoria Martinez
The last event of the weekend was the men’s doubles, where the Dyer brothers, Jack and Elliot did well to reach the semi-finals and came up against the Launceston/Saltash pairing of Ross Lashbrook and Richard Townsend the defending champions who proved too powerful and experienced in the end. St Austell’s Guy Michell and James Whetter had reached the final comfortably but proved no match for Ross and Richard, who won in two ends of accurate smashing and quick retrieval to defend their title.
Men’s doubles champions Ross Lashbrook and Richard Townsend on the left in action against Guy Michel and James Whetter
In the plate events, Sean Havis from Penryn capped off a good weekend with a hat-trick of victories in the singles, doubles and mixed, with his partners Tony Wong from Penzance and fellow student Amy Cox. The women’s singles plate final was contested by two 14 year olds from Truro – Melissa Lin and Mollie Bailey with Melissa winning in the end.
Plate singles winners and runners up – from left Sean Havis, Mark Pearson, Melissa Lin and Mollie Bailey
Plate mixed doubles winners Sean Havis and Amy Cox
Plate women’s doubles winners Aabha Mate and Melissa Lin
Plate men’s doubles winners Sean Havis and Tony Wong
A fine weekend of matchplay with some new plus some defending champions and a promising mix of youth and experience bodes well for the new season for Cornwall’s badminton.
Cornwall Badminton Association's latest Bonanza will take place on Sunday October 16th at the Sir Ben Ainslie 8 court sports hall at Truro School.
The idea of Badminton Bonanza tournaments is to give both social players and those who play league badminton a chance to try out and develop their skills against different players. Last year's successful tournament saw over 50 regular players from all over Cornwall and Devon joined by some very welcome new faces, some playing in a tournament for the first time, with any profits going towards developing new clubs in Cornwall.
Closing date for entries is October 9th - entry form available here.