Badminton Banter - March 2013

Badminton Banter – 20th March 2013 Report by Sandra Lynch

5 Manawatu Juniors will represent the Central Regions in Australia!

What does it take for 5 young badminton players to get to Melbourne?

A year of preparation, training, more tournaments and over $3000 each! And possibly the excitement of being away from their families for 2 weeks at their parents expense. Five Manawatu junior badminton players will be leaving for Melbourne to play in the 2013 June Bevan Trophy over the Easter weekend. They are part of 2 Central Region teams this year.

Both Jonathan Tan and Callum Hill are in Team 1, while Chris Varghese, Danielle Skarott and Dinithi Bowatte are in Team 2. For these 15 and 16 year olds, this is their second trip to Australia to participate in the June Bevan Trophy. Last year the tournament was held in Hobart.

The players have been attending team training camps every second weekend since February which went up a notch to a weekly training in March. This is over and above the regular training they have been receiving during the year.

The tournament will be held in Altona, on the outskirts of Melbourne. They will play in the June Bevan Teams event and then the U17 Australasian Individual Championships. New Zealand will be represented by 4 teams; 2 from Central Region, 1 from the north of the North Island and the other from the South Island. In Altona, the overall team numbers are up from 13 to 16.

The 5 players (together with 22 other players from New Plymouth, Wanganui, Hawkes Bay and Wellington) will be accompanied by their coaches; Maggie Lee (Wellington), Graham Feist (Wanganui), managers; Janice Cudby (the Badminton Manawatu president), Raewyn Robertson (Hastings), umpire Greg Busch (Palmerston North) and 3 parents. The event for 2014 will be held in Auckland, where more NZ teams will be expected to participate.

Manawatu Badminton Week 11th-17th March 2013

Our inaugural Manawatu Badminton Week took place last week with loads of badminton events promoting the sport. We had schools and clubs taking part with open nights, lunchtime sessions and fun competitions. In all we had over 200 people who took part and enjoyed our sport. Clubs are still open to new members and happy to help you out if you are new to the sport.

Schools Badminton

Our ‘Badminton for Schools Initiative’ kicked off this week with Hokowhitu Primary School. Four classes with just over 60 kids were introduced to badminton, the game, the basic grips and rackets skills. The teachers also learned a bit on how to introduce the game to their students. We have Carncot School, Monrad Intermediate and Palmerston North Intermediate Normal School also lined up to take part. This initiative has been part funded by Sport Manawatu’s KiwiSport Regional Partnership Fund.

Our Primary School Competition is in full swing at the moment with 32 teams from 10 local primary schools now participating. Many of the school children are new to badminton and are already showing great improvement in their badminton knowledge and skills.