The North East Wales Badminton League got underway with clubs in three divisions looking forward to an exciting 2018/19 season.
In Division 1, last year’s champions Flint Phoenix A commenced where they left off with a resounding 7 – 1 win over visitors Deeside who included a number of new signings. Deeside’s only winners were at fourth mixed when Steve Barlow and the experienced Jill Povey outlasted Andy Gibbons and Holly Gill to triumph by 15/21, 21/19 and 21/15.
Mold A travelled to Ruthin to take on Llanferres A and came away 6 – 2 winners. Mold were strengthened by the inclusion of Welsh International Dan Font which meant Llanferres were always up against it but fought well throughout the match. However for Llanferres Angelia You and Sara Jenkins gave a good account of themselves when they comfortably overcame Debbie Walker and Jane Peace 21/13 and 21/16 at second ladies.
Two of last season’s mid-table clubs met again when Rossett A entertained Denbigh A at Darland Sports Centre, with the fixture going to the home team 6 – 2. Match of the evening was at first mixed when the visiting pairing of Steve Aylott and Beverley Dolman proved just too strong for Simon Lane and Sue Lord going on to win a tough three game encounter by 22/20, 17/21 and 21/17.
Are Hawarden favourites for promotion from Division 2 this season? Up against a talented Llanferres B side they showed they have strength in depth with a resounding 7 – 1 home win. Lorna Kernahan was player of the match for Hawarden and teaming up with the skilful Rob Jones they put Howard Robinson and Gill Tustain to the sword with a comprehensive 21/18 and 21/9 win at fourth mixed.
Demoted last season, Connah’s Quay look unlikely to return to Division 1 with a performance which saw them trounced 6 -2 away to Buckley. In an entertaining match at first men’s “elder statesmen” Steve Eltham and Rob Bishop were pushed all the way by the young pairing of Charlie Cahill and Amogh Patil before running out deserved 21/19 and 21/12 winners.
Prestatyn A have got off to a fantastic start to the season in Division 3 easily winning their first two matches. At home to Flint Phoenix C they proved too strong for the opposition and wrapped up a 6 – 2 inspired performance. Glyn Watson starred for Prestatyn and together with Terry Wynne at first men’s they played classic doubles tactics to eventually outwit Alfie Moorcroft and Chris Travers taking their match by 19/21, 21/13 and 21/17.
Holywell B then faced visitors Prestatyn A and were ruthlessly whitewashed 8 – 0. At second ladies, for Holywell Chloe Jones and Hilary Roberts came near to taking an event when they dug in and made Jane Hodgson and Claire Atmore work hard to earn their 19/21, 21/13 and 21/15 victory.