Ulster University Badminton
Ulster University have won the Badminton Ireland intervarsity championship. The two day tournament was held at Queens University, Belfast on March 20th until the 22nd. There were 17 teams in total entered into the competition.
Ulster University entered a team of six men and six women to compete in the competition. Ulster started the competition well, impressively defeating Trinity seconds 8-0, Limerick 5-3 and Sligo IT 8-0. In the quarter final, Ulster University had a comfortable 8-0 win again NUIG to claim their semi final spot.
Ulster University reached the final by defeating last year’s champions, UCD 6-2 in the semi final. The Ulster team then went on to defeat Queens University 5-1 in the final to become all Ireland university champions.
This was the first time in five years that Ulster University has entered the intervarsities but despite the pressure of competing, the team performed brilliantly throughout the competition.
“The team performed really strong throughout the competition. Our top players won all their matches as expected, but it was great to see players who have come through the Ulster University badminton club, giving great performances, challenging good players and in some cases getting the win.” said team member Ciaran Chambers.
The two day competition is a real test of fitness and determination. The players were under extreme pressure throughout the competition but throughout the competition Ciaran grew quietly confident of the team’s ability. “For some of our players it was their first time competing in front of a crowd so I think some of the team struggled initially with nerves in the early matches. But as the event continued and we saw other teams, there were parts of me that were starting to think we could do this! Once we overcame UCD in the semi final, I knew we were in with a serious chance of winning the whole competition.”
Ulster University had further reason to celebrate when players Sinead Chambers and Ciaran Chambers were named male and female players of the tournament. Ciaran and Sinead were joined by their other team members who could hold their own against some of the best players in Ireland. “Zoe Purdy and Kelly Harron really showed their potential to compete with some of Ireland’s top players as they challenged for every single point they player.” Said Ciaran Chambers.
Next year the team will be competing within the Ulster league in division 8 in the hope to further their success. Some of the team members are also hoping to compete in the World and European games throughout the summer.
Congratulations to all involved in the Ulster University badminton club.
Ulster University badminton team:
Ciaran Chambers, Stuart Lightbody, Jonny Harron, Jason Elmore, Mark Hetherington, Peter Linton, Sinead Chambers, Zoe Purdy, Kelly Harron, Abigail Edwards, Joanna Baskin and Zoe Brooke-Kinnear.
Article by Emma Ryan