Northumberland’s promising junior Lucy Dodd from Ponteland made her second trip to the English National Badminton Championships recently – and came back with a bronze medal. The first event was mixed doubles, which was played in knock-out format. Lucy played with Oliver Wu from Surrey; the first time that they had played together. They had good wins in the first two rounds, 21-11 21-11 and 21-8 21-9, respectively, with both pairs including seeds from the girls singles. In the quarter finals they came up against the no.3 seeds Grace Sachdeva and Sonish Hathi, an experienced pair, and pushed them hard before losing 21-15 21-19.
The next event was the girls’ singles with initial matches played in groups of three. Lucy had a tough draw, being included in a group with her doubles partner, Angie Zhu from Yorkshire one of the seeds, against whom she has had a number of close wins and losses in the past. After comfortably winning her first group singles, Lucy had a long, hard match against Angie, losing the first end 21-16, before recovering to win the second end 21-19. Angie proved too good on the day, winning the final end 21-11 and ultimately went on to the semi-finals where she lost to the eventual winner, Yorkshire’s Grace Sachdeva.
Last up was girls’ doubles, with Lucy and Angie confirming their number 3 seeding by comfortably wining all 3 matches in their group to get to the semi-finals. Here they played the number 2 seeds and eventual winners, Grace Sachdeva and Sia Pandit (both from Yorkshire). Unfortunately the opposition were too strong, with Lucy and Angie losing 21-6 21-14, but taking a well-deserved bronze medal for their efforts.
Very well done to Lucy!