Posted: Fri, 17 Mar 2023 10:00
During early March we have had our KS3 and KS4 Team Leicestershire County Badminton Finals at the Babington Academy. Due to the adverse weather conditions, the KS4 Boys Finals were postponed but we are hoping to be able to reschedule them as soon as possible.
Congratulations and thank you to every school that attended these County finals, the level of badminton played over the course of the week was outstanding, as was the spirit and sporting values demonstrated by all participants, team managers and spectators
With 6 teams competing in the KS3 Girls Finals, teams were split into 2 pools of 3. The top two teams from each pool progressed to a semi-final, leading to a final and 3rd place play off. The group matches were all highly competitive, with a number of matches going all the way to 20-20 before being won by a single point! The teamwork and tactical play during the doubles matches was a particular highlight for those watching on! Eventually, Newbridge topped their group making it through to take on Gartree, whilst Loughborough High topped theirs to meet Humphrey Perkins in the semi-finals.
The semi-finals were a tense affair, all participants seemingly upping their games in a bid to make the finals. The shots seemed to get bigger as well, with plenty of smash winner hit! Despite the best efforts of their opponents, it was Newbridge and Loughborough High who just found that little bit extra to come out on top and make it to the final. Humphrey Perkins taking on Gartree for the bronze medal.
The concluding matches were once again of a really high standard, in particular the final was a great watch, nobody was quite sure which way it was going to until the final set of matches! Loughborough High fought admirably with some great defensive play, but Newbridge proved too strong in the end.
The final standings for the KS3 Girls:
- Loughborough High
- Humphrey Perkins
- Castle Mead & Priory Belvoir
There were 8 teams competing in the KS3 Boys Finals to become 2022-23 County Badminton Champions. Once again, the level on skills on show were extremely impressive, leading to some highly competitive matches. For this competition teams were divided into 2 pools of 4, generating a great atmosphere across the 2 badminton halls. There were several very close singles matches, where the outcome really could have gone either way. Competition manager Carole Spencer was particularly impressed with the execution of the drop shots being played on a number of the courts during the group stages.
Following the pools matches, it was Newbridge, Loughborough Grammar, Lutterworth College and Soar Valley that progressed to the semi-finals, whilst Castle Mead, Beauchamp, Bosworth Academy and Humphrey Perkins played off for the remaining places.
In the semi-finals Newbridge took on Lutterworth, whilst Soar Valley faced Loughborough Grammar. There was great determination shown by all teams during this stage of the competition, all players clearly wanting to reach a county final. Throughout the semi-finals there was many examples of good sportsmanship and respect for their opponents, with players congratulating each other for a good shot or at the end of the match. Following 2 very competitive matches, it was Newbridge who continued their excellent week by reaching the final along with Loughborough Grammar. The week got even better for Newbridge, as the really upped their game against strong opponents, who to their credit never gave in and were never completely out of the running. In the end though, Newbridge held their nerve to claim their second victory of the week.
The final standings for the KS3 Boys:
- Loughborough Grammar
- Soar Valley
- Lutterworth College
- Castle Mead
- Bosworth Academy
- Humphrey Perkins
In the latter half of the week it was the turn of the KS4 Girls teams to go head to head following their victories in their local area leagues. 6 teams were able to attend the finals, giving us 2 groups of 3, with the top 2 teams once again qualifying for the semi-final stages.
A number of team managers mentioned that for many of the girls, this was the first time they had competed at Babington against such a high calibre of opponent, so it was great so many were getting to experience competition of this level for the very first time.
As well as showcasing their badminton skills, all teams should be really proud of the way they conducted themselves throughout the competition. There was great comradery amongst the teams, with some players coaching and offering advice to other players within the team to improve their games.
Following the 2 sets of pools matches, it was Woodbrook Vale, Brookvale Groby, Crown Hills and Gartree that made it through to the semi-finals. Despite not reaching this stage of the competition, special mentions go out to both Babington and Welland Park for their resilience and improvement throughout the competition.
The semi-finals were the closest we had all week, with both encounters poised at 2-2 before being decided by the final match. Huge credit to all teams in the semi-finals for making them so watchable and exciting for the spectators! Congratulations to both Brookvale and Crown Hills for making it through to the final, and well done as well to their opponents Woodbrook Vale and Gartree.
It was fitting that the final was also won by a 3-2 margin, highlighting again what an incredibly competitive event this had been! Even the deciding match was only settled by a few points, so it made for a great atmosphere as everybody else watched on. There was a big cheer when the final winning shot was hit by Brookvale, well done to them!
The final standings for the KS4 Girls:
- Crown Hills
- Woodbrook Vale
- Welland Park
Our thanks to Carole Spencer from Leicestershire Schools Badminton Association, Babington Academy for hosting and the staff and players of all schools who competed.
We hope everyone thoroughly enjoyed the occasion and we look forward to welcoming you along to another Team Leicestershire event in the near future.
The full photo albums can be found on our Facebook page.