Disability Junior National Championships
Sat 17th June 2023 | Sheffield
Badminton England held its first Disability Junior National Championships on Saturday 17th June 2023. It took place at the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield, which is the largest multi-sports centre in the UK.
What is the Disability Junior National Championships all about?
These Championships are part of Badminton England’s wider strategy to raise the profile of badminton amongst secondary age pupils with a physical disability. The Championships were delivered with the support of the GB Para Badminton Squad & Regional Disability Coaches.
Our very own Ashish Patani, was one of only eight regional disabilities coaches, appointed by Badminton England to help deliver these Championships.
The national competition structure aimed to engage new disabled players by providing them with their first introduction to disability competition and ultimately increase disability participation. This is part of Badminton England’s Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Strategy, which includes increasing disability provision.
How did the day roll out?
There were various juniors (aged 11 to 16 years) that participated in the Championships, representing different English regions, accompanied by their parents and some with their siblings too for support. Once all the participants were greeted by Badminton England, the Regional Disability Coaches and Umpires, there was a short briefing to get everyone into the sprite of the friendly competitive atmosphere
Ashish, alongside fellow Regional Disability Coach, Alistair Jones, helped coach and encourage two junior participants from South Central and South West region.
They each had different disabilities, SH6 (Short stature) and SL4 (lower limb impairment), who played against teams from three other regions. Both participated in many singles and doubles matches, with a few breaks in between, but kept to a tight schedule.
We are so proud that these two young players recorded some great results over the course of the day, to be crowned the Championship winners and secured a Gold medal each.
This was a fantastic result for both, and will definitely inspire them to keep their badminton training going and advance further in the sport. Well done to all the participants from all the regions and all the coaches, umpires and Badminton England representatives.
Was a great day and a wonderful first Disability Junior National Championships. Looking forward to a bigger and even more exciting Championships next year!