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England seek Euro badminton title

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Category: Badminton News Published: 10 February 2009
Posted by Hits: 1136

England will give experience to younger players, and aim to go one better and win badminton's European Team Championship in Liverpool this week.

The tournament brings Great Britain's stars together on home soil at the start of the 2012 Olympic cycle.

The new pairing of Nathan Robertson and Jenny Wallwork, 22, are set to feature at some point in the group stages.

"We've only just started out so we've got a lot to learn together on court," Robertson told the BBC.

We've only just started out so we've got a lot to learn together on court
Nathan Robertson on his new partnership with Jenny Wallwork

Current European mixed doubles champions Donna Kellogg and Anthony Clark spearhead the team, whose first match is against the Czech Republic on Tuesday.

National champion Rajiv Ouseph, 22, will take the men's singles spot in the first match.

Nineteen-year-old Chris Adcock joins veteran Robert Blair in the men's doubles, and Wallwork teams up with Leeds club-mate Gabby White, 18, in the women's doubles.

But Robertson and Wallwork - who came together after Gail Emms retired following the Beijing Games - are looking forward to spending more time together as Wright rotates his squad.

"It's not hard to find a partner but it's hard to gel on court together, and everything that comes with experience with a partner," Robertson added.

England, runners-up last year, are second seeds behind holders Denmark, and top seeds in a group that includes Scotland, Wales and the Czech Republic.

"We are in confident mood but not over-confident," said manager Ian Wright.

"We know the Czechs have strong singles players, and the Scottish squad have improved a lot because several of them do their GB training at Milton Keynes."

The teams are divided into eight groups of four, with the nation topping each group making up the eight quarter-finalists.

England, Scotland and Wales are all in group eight, with the winner expected to face a quarter-final against Ukraine and a semi-final against Poland or the Netherlands on Saturday.

England take on Wales on Wednesday and Scotland on Thursday.


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