English National Badminton Championships 2020
1st - 2nd February at Westgate Badminton Centre
Watch all the action from the Nationals weekend using the links below:
Building on the success of last year’s event, Hampshire Badminton were invited once again by Badminton England to host this prestigious tournament on 1st and 2nd February.
This time around, we had much longer to plan and prepare for the big event and allowed us to produce a competition that was bigger, better and more successful than the previous attempt (although 2019 was a pretty good effort!)
One of the key improvements made this year was the coverage of the matches on YouTube. These was supplied by a fantastic team of staff and students from Solent University, Southampton where students are studying for a career in TV and film production. Another great addition this year was the commentary on the broadcast which helped to add a different dimension and provide a much more ‘slick’ and professional viewing experience for those watching from the comfort of their sofas! Our thanks go to the staff and students at Solent University for the superb service they provided us all weekend.
Inside the venue, the atmosphere was cranked up on last year with the sale of 40% more tickets than in 2019. This created a more vibrant and energetic ‘feel’ to the whole event which, considering we had no fewer than nine Hampshire players taking part, would have been a huge source of inspiration.
Hampshire’s very own Max Flynn and his partner Fee Teng Liew clinched the mixed doubles crown in their first ever final at senior level. Fellow Hampshire player Ollie Baczala put in an incredible performance against last year’s runner-up Sam Parsons to win in two sets. This game was truly electric and Ollie set the arena alight with his mesmerising display of defensive and attacking play. Unfortunately Ollie was knocked-out at the semi-final stage where a fresher Johnnie Torjussen was to prove a game too far having only played the one game previously as one of the seeds.
Defending a title is no mean feat but Chloe Birch successfully defended both her women’s singles and doubles titles at the English National Badminton Championships in Winchester. The 24-year-old tasted victory in the first final of the day as she defeated Freya Redfearn to win her fourth singles title in a row. In a close contest Birch showed her experience over the young star, who was competing in the final for the first time, to triumph in two games – 21-12 21-17. Birch had already taken to the court before her singles final, as she teamed up with Lauren Smith in the semi-finals of the doubles.
The top seeds advanced to the final with a straightforward 21-10 21-13 win over Jessica Hopton and Hope Warner. After her gold medal exploits in the singles, Birch returned with Smith but the doubles final wasn’t as clear-cut. Jenny Moore and Viki Williams put the pressure on and claimed the first game 21-12 but the defending champions fought back to win 12-12 21-18 21-11.
The victory ensured Smith etched her name into the record books as she clinched her eighth women’s doubles title – having not tasted defeat since 2012 – putting her level with Gillian Gowers.
Alex Lane became a two-time men’s singles champion at the English Nationals as he beat Johnnie Torjussen 21-19 21-10 in the final. The 2017 champion faced a tough test in the first game with neither player able to get momentum but Lane edged ahead in the closing stages and sealed the result in two games.
There was an amazing performance for Max Flynn and Fee Teng Liew in the mixed doubles as they clinched the crown in their first final. After knocking out the 3/4 seeds in yesterday’s quarter-finals, the duo continued in resolute fashion and triumphed 21-11 21-19 over second seeds Tom Wolfenden and Moore.
In the last final of the day, Wolfenden bagged a title as he teamed up with Greg Mairs to win the men’s doubles. It was a tense first game but the duo eventually got the better of Rory Easton and Ethan Van Leeuwen, beating them 18-21 21-13 21-12.