Tuesday 28 January 2020

The First Matches of 2020

Cornwall’s top badminton players travelled to Bath again at the weekend to play the next set of matches in Badminton England’s Senior County Championships, the flagship county tournament which sees 120 teams of players representing their home counties across England.
1st team stars

First up were a young Avon team, and the Cornish boys got off to a flyer in the singles with three stunning victories for Tyler and Liam Sillifant from Launceston, and Truro’s Harry Dyer. Tyler’s victory was an impressive 2 ends in the number one slot, and Liam and Harry dug deep to come through in three.
In the top women’s singles, Cara Collins the young international from Liskeard, showed excellent consistency and court coverage to win in two tight ends, while Truro’s Melissa Lin, making her first team debut fought hard but lost in two, to make the score 4-1 going into the doubles.
Tom Lyle and his fellow Launceston compatriot Liam, gave no quarter in their men’s doubles, cruising to a fine win, but St Austell’s James Whetter and Guy Michell found it tougher going in the number two slot against an experienced and wily Avon pair.

Guy and James poised for action

The women’s doubles were also split, with Cara and Melissa battling the whole way and coming out on top after a tense and exciting three ends which gave Cornwall the overall victory with 6 games. Camborne’s Bronwen Wotton, this time partnering Amy Cox from London also pushed their opponents hard but just lost out, to go into the final two mixed doubles games.

Melissa and Cara winning

First up were Tom and Bronwen playing a good Avon pair – this game also went the distance, with some great rallies and thrilling attack and defense before the result just going to Avon. Harry and Amy finished the match on a high, a brand-new pairing which triumphed in three ends of nerve-biting badminton and amazing retrieval as the final end finished 23-21 to Cornwall, to give the match score 7-4 to Cornwall.

Some smiles after the win

The afternoon match was against a strong team from Gloucestershire, and this time Tyler and Liam were up against talented singles players and lost out, before Harry won the first end, lost the second, then stunningly won in the third. Cara once again saved the day winning comfortably in two, and Amy put up a brave battle but went down fighting.
The two Cornish men’s doubles pairs were no match for the Gloucestershire boys as everyone tired, in the women’s doubles Cara and Melissa were very unlucky to go the distance but lose in three, and the opponents had to concede the second doubles due to injury.
The match finished with the mixed doubles, and again Tom and Bronwen resisted hard but lost in two, leaving Harry and Melissa to complete the day, buy unluckily losing after an epic battle which had the Cornish supporters gripped, to make the match score 8-3 to Gloucestershire.

Amy and Harry in the mixed

This result gives Cornwall a very creditable mid table position to take to the final weekend at the end of March.
1st team – Tyler Sillifant, Liam Sillifant (both Launceston), Harry Dyer (Truro), Guy Michell, James Whetter (both St Austell), Cara Collins (LIskeard), Melissa Lin (Truro), Bronwen Wotton (Camborne), Amy Cox (London).

Monday 13 January 2020

The Master’s County Challenge 2020

Cornwall’s two badminton veteran teams travelled to Bournemouth and Southampton at the weekend to take part in Badminton England’s County Challenge this year. This is a single weekend of competition with over 125 county teams and 1200 players competing in age groups from over 40 to over 70 years.

Cornwall over 50s

The “younger” Cornish team, with ages ranging from 52 to 70, were competing against Hertfordshire, Oxfordshire and Avon over 2 days in their age group, and it was tough going for a team missing some regulars. With a fine battling draw on day one against Oxfordshire, Liskeard’s Janet Santillo and regular partner Lynda Beer from Callington had a good weekend, winning 3 of their games against tough opposition

Lynda and Jan win again 

Richard Jones made a welcome return to the team, travelling from North Devon for the occasion, winning two of his mixed games with Truro’s Sue Biscoe, and team Captain Lorna Riggs of Newquay had a well-deserved women’s doubles victory with Sue in the last match of the final day, while debutant Tony Wong from St Ives, tasted victory in a men’s doubles game.

Tony makes his debut

Bob and Richard

Despite the overall results and league position, a good time was had by all, on the badminton court and on the dance floor on Saturday evening, before the long trip home.

Captain Lorna and Pete

Before the dancing began

The over 65 team, had an excellent weekend in their competition played in Eastleigh near Southampton, finishing a very creditable 2nd place in their league, led by Captain Brian Hannibal from Penzance.

Over 50s team – Bob Bell (Callington), Richard Jones (Minehead), Pete Bazin (St Austell), Tony Wong (St Ives), Lynda Beer (Callington), Jan Santillo (Liskeard), Lorna Riggs (Captain, Newquay), Sue Biscoe (Truro).

Monday 6 January 2020

Cornwall Badminton Veterans Championships 2020

With an age range of 42 to 73 years, over 25 vets badminton players from all over Cornwall, from St Just to Callington, spent the day at Cornwall College’s Sports Hall at Pool in the annual Veterans Championships at the weekend.

All the players, officials and fans

The women’s doubles was won by the narrowest of margins, by Newquay’s Lorna Riggs and Sue Biscoe from Truro, while the men’s doubles champions were County Chairman Bob Bell from Callington and his partner, Liskeard’s Jon Wyatt.

Winners Lorna and Sue, Bob and Jon

There were also some excellent mixed doubles to finish off the day, and the final came down to a play-off between the experienced Penzance’s Brian Hannibal and Celia Hilman from Truro, against the relatively young James Whetter from St Austell and St Just’s Vicki Meade. After the new handicapping system was applied, Brian and Celia were declared champions, to end a thoroughly satisfying day of good badminton and a great start to the 

Runners up James and Vicki with champions Celia and Brian