The 2019/20 Badminton season opened with a record entry of teams in three divisions the North East Wales Senior Badminton League. With promoted teams looking forward to the new challenge of pitting their skills against higher ranked clubs and relegated teams aiming to top their division there was much excitement when the fixtures got under way earlier this month.
In Division 1 Llanferres A showed they were not going to be a pushover this season when they romped to a comprehensive 6 – 2 home win over Mold B. Match of the evening at fourth mixed was a triumph of experience over youth, when Dave Clough and Wendy Swash kept their nerve in the deciding game to just snatch victory from Dan Roberts and Lili Thomas, winning 19/21, 21/16 and 24/22.
Newly promoted Eros entertained Rossett A and took the fixture 6 – 2. Undefeated Louise Cothier was player of the match for Rossett and together with Rachel Twiss at second ladies, played shrewd tactical ladies doubles to easily account for Heather Astley and Sheila Palmer winning by 21/10 and 21/12.
The Llanferres Blazin’ B team just avoided relegation last season but their first result in Division 2, with an 8 – 0 defeat at home in the hands of Flint Phoenix B, does not auger well for the future. The dynamic duo of Phil Roberts and Alex Graham were in great form for Phoenix and with tight net play and heavy smashes, delighted their team mates with a clear 21/15, 21/15 win over of the established pairing of Dave Clough and Peter Williams at first men’s.
It was a magnificent start for Prestatyn A when they showed why they were promoted from the lower division, in handing out a 7 – 1 thrashing to visitors Llangollen. Appearing in Prestatyn’s A team for the first time, Bill Teece and Ruth Salisbury played inspired badminton and in a thrilling match at fourth mixed against Zoe Pritchard and Karl Young, ran out 21/17, 21/18 winners.
Perhaps it was inevitable that in the Connah’s Quay v Holywell A fixture, with both clubs having been relegated to Division 3, that this would be a highly competitive match. And that is exactly how it turned out with home team Holywell A digging and taking the closely fought match 5 – 3. Undefeated Junior Welsh International player, Mike Pritchard was player of the match for the Quay and together with Sue Chisholm played superbly to overcome Jamie Norman and Nicky Garnett – Hughes and win by 21/16 and 21/17.