59 Entrants and Darth Vader made 60 – another spectacular result for Badminton in North Tyneside
Tyneside Sharks Badminton Club, in partnership with the North Tyneside Community Badminton Network, (North Tyneside Badminton Partnership), organised and ran another highly successful social badminton tournament at the Parks Leisure Centre, North Shields on Sunday 10 February. This was the third of these tournaments aimed at non-club, social and recreational players, providing them with the opportunity for fun and social competition.
An unexpected guest appearance from Darth Vader threatened to disrupt events, but having consulted with the Badminton World Federation, his light sabre was declared an illegal type of racket and he was banished to another court, in a galaxy far, far way . . . . . . .
The tournament’s 59 players competed in men’s, women’s and mixed doubles events. For some of the entrants these sessions give them the opportunity to have their first taste of competitive badminton. The number of participants from over 50’s sessions within the area is indicative of the appeal of badminton for players of all ages and the camaraderie between competitors continues to be a major positive factor.
The women’s doubles event saw 6 pairs competing in one group. In a highly competitive event, the pairings of Pam Moat/Lin Gray, Angie Paterson/Wei Chin and Alison Jones/Sarah Lewis all won 4 matches. Based on points scored, the runners-up were Paterson/Chin, with Jones/Lewis being declared the winners by the slender margin of 4 points.
In the men’s doubles, 15 pairs split into 3 groups, with the winners of each group playing off to decide the top 3 places. Having won their respective groups by remaining unbeaten, the pairings of Martin Crossland /Jonathan Campbell, A Wazed/Redwan Ahmed and Saiful Sazalli/Anqi Yu contested the final 3 places. Wazed and Ahmed finally triumphed, with Sazalli and Yu taking the runners-up slot.
16 pairs competed in the mixed doubles and following a hugely competitive event the final was won by Saiful Sazalli and Jenni Chung, 21-19 against Mike Turton and Ann Renwick.
Northumberland County Player Sarah Renton and Councillor Westwater (North Tyneside Council) made guest appearances to support the players and present them with their prizes. An additional prize of a ‘complimentary’ 1-1 coaching session with North Tyneside’s 2012 Coach of the Year Mike Woodward, was awarded to Amy Jackson, who demonstrated huge tenacity and enthusiasm in the women’s doubles event, partnering her mum Joanne.
Thanks again go to everyone involved in the organisation and running of the tournament on the day. Particular thanks to the Volunteers who, with their help, enable these events to take place, including Lynn Carr-Woodward from Tyneside Sharks Badminton Club, Mike and Norma Waterfield from the North Tyneside Badminton Partnership and Nicola Waterfield, Rene Waugh, Gareth Dick and Kristie Campbell from Partnership member clubs. Also invaluable was the help and support of Sport North Tyneside staff Darren Greco and Jenni Wade, as well as the assistance and co-operation of the staff at The Parks Leisure Centre.