Hosts Abbeygate rise to the challenge

SERVICE: Stowmarket's Robert Borratt lines up his serve during play.
SERVICE: Stowmarket's Robert Borratt lines up his serve during play.
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ABBEYGATE Badminton Club welcomed clubs from across the county as they hosted their seventh ‘Ray Learney’ Junior Team Challenge on Sunday.

The tournament, named after Learney, a well renowned local and national coach, first began in 1997 on the eve of Abbeygate Badminton Club gaining both their Clubmark and Badminton England Premier Club status which they successfully renewed at the beginning of this season.

The team challenge was set-up to facilitate competition between local junior clubs enabling a range of players from different age groups and abilities to compete against each other in a team competition.

This year’s competition saw each team consist of two under-12, under-14 and under-16 players with sides playing both singles and doubles against each other.

After some fast and furious play throughout the day, Abbeygate red team consisting of Matthew Lawrence, Antonia De Freitas, Georgia Carr, Daniel Wood, Brad Gosling and Robert Fayers were crowned champions after defeating Stowmarket’s Samantha Knott, James Eastall, Craig Newcombe, Tom McClaren, Louis Reynolds and Lucy Williams 5-4.

Abbeygate’s blue team picked up third place while Stowgate came fourth.