Posted by Rob Short at 12:02 on 11 February 2013
After 3 winning three years in a row a young U13 Wales team travelled to North Berwick in Scotland to fight out this year's Celtic Challenge. With Leinster and Lothian traditionally very strong in this age group and with Alpha representing Ulster, a tough contest was expected. The event is played over two days with two matches on day one and one on day two.
First up was Alpha from Ulster with a win in the last mixed to take the tie 8-7, a very tight match. In the afternoon Leinster were beaten by 9-6, another close match setting up the title decider against Lothian the next day. What promised to be close match turned out to be more comfortable than expected with a win by 11-4. This saw Wales retain the cup and record 4 wins in a row, an extraordinary achievement at this age level.
Manager Annette O Neill said
“We could not have asked for any more from the team, they came to win and bring back the Celtic Cup for the 4th time in 4 years, their behaviour on and off the court was a credit to Badminton Wales. My thanks go to Ian Portway and Shu Nin Mo who worked hard all weekend, well done to them and to the team and to the parents who travelled, as they always do, to give great support.“
Eddie O Neill added
“ what a great achievement by a team made up of players who train in all three of our DGs. Annette, Ian and Mo have a special ability to inspire young players and I’m delighted for them and for the children.“
The victorious team managed and coached by Annette O Neill, Ian Portway and Shu Nin Mo were: