Yonex Scottish National Badminton Championships

YONEX Scottish National Badminton Championships

Day 1 of the YONEX Scottish National Badminton Championships from Bell’s Sports Centre in Perth where the top players in Scotland are competing for national honours over the next three days.  Matches start today at 5pm.

Tickets for the Yonex Scottish Nationals are on sale now from Badminton Scotland on 0141 445 1218 or are available at the Bell’s Sports Centre over the three tournament days of February 2, 3 and 4.

Play starts tonight at 5pm and features action in the mixed doubles up to and including the semi-finals, together with qualifying rounds in all other events.

For a full preview and seedings read on for a lowdown via the BADMINTONscotland website:-

Kirsty Gilmour’s pursuit of a seventh straight Nationals women’s singles title will begin on Saturday afternoon.

A win this year would bring her level with Joanna Flockhart, who won seven titles from 1973-1980 and a step closer to Anne Robertson’s nine titles, won over the course of 10 seasons from 1988-1998.

Gilmour, the Scottish Open Grand Prix champion, has lifted the YONEX Scottish National Championships trophy every year since 2012 and the top seed will start her campaign this year in the second round, having been granted a first round bye.

There she will play either Alice Campbell or Sarah Sidebottom when the women’s singles competition gets underway in Bell’s Sports Centre, Perth, this weekend.

As second seed, there is also a bye for Rachel Sugden, who is looking to build on the semi-final place she secured last year.  But her route to the latter stages is far from easy as either Basia Grodynska or Lauren Middleton await in round two while Julie MacPherson – last year’s runner-up – could be a potential semi-final opponent.

Meanwhile Kieran Merrilees is among those awarded a bye in the men’s singles first round, bidding for a sixth title at this level.

Defending champion, Merrilees is the top seed once again but with 30 players in the competition, he’ll have to keep his wits about him should he want a repeat of the success.

Matthew Carder, the only other man to have won the men’s singles title since 2014, is seeded second and receives a bye, up against either former champion Craig Goddard or Matthew Duguid in the second round.

There could also be a sibling meeting in the form of Matthew and third/fourth seed Christopher Grimley, with the pair needing to get to the quarter-finals to take their place on opposing sides of the net.

Meanwhile, the mixed doubles will see the top seeds and reigning champions Gilmour and Patrick MacHugh coming up against siblings Mark and Maria Leith while Ciara and Ben Torrance will also be in action in the mixed doubles – this time against each other in the first round.

Ciara and Adam Hall are second seeds for the Nationals, after both reached the semi-finals with different partners last year, while Ben is alongside Sarah Findlay.

There is also a tough draw for Ciar and Catlin Pringle, who will need to upset third/fourth seeds Martin Campbell and MacPherson if they are to reach the second round in Perth.

And the strength in depth of the men’s and mixed doubles field is something Badminton Scotland Chief Executive Anne Smillie is particularly excited about heading into the tournament.

“The National Championships are always a time to celebrate the sport of badminton in Scotland and this year is no exception,” she said.

“It’s fantastic to see such strong fields once again this year, especially in the men’s and mixed doubles events where I’m sure the titles will be hotly contested.

“After the success of the TOTAL BWF World Championships and the Scottish Open Grand Prix last year, this will be another chance for badminton fans to see their heroes on home courts before they wear the saltire with pride at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.”

Into the men’s doubles and tournament favourites Hall and Alex Dunn will automatically take their place in round two, as will second seeds Campbell and MacHugh.

But progression beyond there will not be as easy as the seedings may suggest for Campbell and MacHugh and they could face Christopher and Matthew Grimley in the second round, who are in red hot form having won the Swedish Junior last weekend.

Finally, women’s doubles top seeds MacPherson and Eleanor O’Donnell, who won their first senior international title in Iceland last weekend, will open their campaign against Middleton and Sarah Sidebottom.

Second seeds Rebekka Findlay and Caitlin Pringle are up against Holly Newall and Ciara Torrance meanwhile, with Newall a semi-finalist in both the singles and doubles 12 months ago.

The Yonex Scottish National Championships are being staged at Bell’s Sports Centre in Perth courtesy of Perth and Kinross Council. Badminton Scotland are also indebted to Yonex UK, Live Active Leisure, Perth Common Good Fund, the management and staff at Bell’s Sports Centre, and Badminton Scotland Court Officials and volunteers.

These are the draws in full.

The full seeds are:

Men’s Singles (Holder : Kieran Merrilees, Glasgow)
1. Kieran Merrilees (Glasgow)
2. Matthew Carder (South Queensferry)
3/4. Christopher Grimley (Glasgow); Ben Torrance (Paisley)

Women’s Singles (Holder : Kirsty Gilmour, Glasgow)
1. Kirsty Gilmour (Glasgow)
2. Rachel Sugden (Alexandria)

Men’s Doubles (Holders : Martin Campbell, Edinburgh/Patrick MacHugh, Kinross)
1. Alex Dunn (Motherwell)/Adam Hall (Mauchline)
2. Martin Campbell (Edinburgh)/Patrick MacHugh (Kinross)

Women’s Doubles (Holders : Julie MacPherson, Edinburgh/Eleanor O’Donnell, Beith)
1. Julie MacPherson (Edinburgh)/Eleanor O’Donnell (Beith)
2. Rebekka Findlay (Erskine)/Caitlin Pringle (Giffnock)

Mixed Doubles (Holders : Patrick MacHugh, Kinross/Kirsty Gilmour, Glasgow)
1. Patrick MacHugh (Kinross)/Kirsty Gilmour (Glasgow)
2. Adam Hall (Mauchline)/Ciara Torrance (Paisley)
3/4. Martin Campbell (Edinburgh)/Julie MacPherson (Edinburgh); Alex Dunn (Motherwell)/Eleanor O’Donnell (Beith)

Play starts tonight at 5pm and features action in the mixed doubles up to and including the semi-finals, together with qualifying rounds in all other events.

Tickets in advance are available via the Badminton Scotland office on 0141 445 1218.

Tickets on the day for the Yonex Scottish National Badminton Championships on the door priced: Adults £3 ~ Concessions (U18, over 65, and students) £2.

A season ticket for all three days of the YONEX Scottish National Badminton Championships is available priced: Adults £12 ~ Concessions £8.