Hertfordshire youngsters storm to national badminton title

The successful Herts U15 badminton side

The successful Herts U15 badminton side - back row: Chenara De Silva, Aditi Dhelaria, Anna Stewart, Saghana Thayaparan, Aayushi Dhelaria. Front row: Hanson Shinghei Sy, Jaxon Clarke, Johan Jospeh, Jeff Ani Joseph, Dev Mathur with Mike Newlove at the back. - Credit: HERTS BADMINTON

A squad of talented youngsters from across Hertfordshire has claimed a national badminton title.

The U15s took the top honours in the National County Championship, an event which brings counties from across England with each match the best of 20 games.

And after battling through a regional competition, Herts found themselves in the knockout finals with seven other teams, held at Derby Arena.

Seeded second behind Berkshire, Herts beat Nottinghamshire 18-2 in the quarter-finals before repeating the score in the semi-final against Surrey.

It set up a battle of the top seeds in the final, although only just as Berkshire needed to be separated against Yorkshire in the other semi on points difference after a 10-10 draw.

But Hertfordshire, who train at Herts Sports Village in Hatfield, remained unstoppable, claiming the title after the singles and the mixed doubles before eventually closing out a 17-3 success.

Hertfordshire U15s: Jaxon Clarke (Hertford), Chenara De Silva (Letchworth), Aayushi Dhelaria (Hatfield), Aditi Dhelaria (Hatfield), Jeff Ani Joseph (Stevenage), Johan Joseph (Watford), Dev Mathur (Hatfield), Hanson Shinghei Sy (St Albans), Anna Stewart (Welwyn), Saghana Thayaparan (Letchworth).

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Coaches: Mike Newlove, Kelly Matthews, Graeme Clarke.