OLYMPIC silver medallist Gail Emms has been awarded an MBE for her services to badminton in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
Emms, who teamed up with Nathan Robertson to capture silver at Athens 2004, hung up her racquet after the Beijing Olympics, but currently works for Badminton England in an ambassadorial capacity.
The 31-year-old also captured the World Championships title in 2006, and the European crown in 2004, again with Robertson.
"It came as a bit of a shock but it’s nice to be appreciated and reflects all the hard work that all athletes have to put in to their sport," said Emms.
"This award isn’t about me, it’s about all the coaches and support staff who have been behind my success."
Emms collected 68 caps for England and remains Commonwealth champion. She and Robertson were the world’s number one pair between 2005 and 2006 in a purple patch, which brought back-to-back victories at the Yonex All England and Wilson Swiss Open.
She also teamed up with Donna Kellogg in the women’s doubles to be crowned European champions in 2006 and runners up in 2008.
"Her achievements in recent years have been outstanding and she is truly recognised as one of the greatest players of all time. This award is richly deserved," added Badminton England chief executive Adrian Christy.