The first two Irish Nationals of the 2017/18 season will take place this weekend (3rd/4th Feb 2018) at Baldoyle Badminton Centre. 110 players from across Ireland will come to Dublin to compete in the U15 and Senior Nationals. This has set up some exciting matches this weekend.
The Irish Senior Nationals has seen a 15% increase in participants in 2018. 10 time Irish National Winners Sam & Chloe Magee aim to win their 11th Nationals mixed doubles title in a row. They start the tournament in the 2nd round against John Amond and Laura Hennessy, after receiving a round 1 bye. The European Medallists could see themselves playing against 3/4 seeds Eddie Cousins and Moya Ryan in the Semi- Finals, if all goes to plan.
Elsewhere, Ireland's young star Nhat Nguyen aims to become a three time National Winner in the Men's Singles at the age of 17. Nhat will start off his campaign against either Tony Crowley or Brian Moore in round 2. With a large draw of 30 players, we should see some intriguing matchups. Number two seed Joshua Magee will be looking to win his first Singles Nationals title after losing in the Final for the past three years. Josh will also be going for his fourth Men's Doubles Nationals title in a row as he will be pairing up with a new partner in Paul Reynolds. The exciting new partnership will have to overcome some stiff opposition if they are to progress through the tournament, with a second round fixture against Crowley/Davies or Cousins/Marron. The young pair will need to be on-top of their game if they wish to win a National title. On the other side of the draw, number two seeds Nhat Nguyen and Daniel Magee will face off against Declan Bennett & Fergal Brennan in round 1. Daniel will be aiming to face off against his brother Josh in the Final whilst Nhat will be aiming to play against his former doubles partner Paul Reynolds.
In the Women's Singles Rachael Darragh will be looking to defend her Irish Nationals Women's singles title against a very competitive field of players. Rachael's first game will be against either Rebecca Getty or Xuan Zhao Beattie. A win in this match would see her progress to the Semi-Finals potentially against Rebecca Woods. The Women's doubles event sees Sinead Chambers and Jennie King aiming to win their sixth Irish Women's Doubles Nationals. After losing their title last year to Chloe Magee and Rachael Darragh, the pair will be eager to win this year's competition. Their first fixture will come in the second round against Xuan Zhao Beattie and Pamela Pontanosa.
Click here to see the draws for the 2018 Irish Nationals
Click here to see the previous Irish Nationals winners.
U15 Irish Nationals
The U15 Irish Nationals will be held on the same weekend as the Senior Nationals. The U15s sees young players from across the island compete against each other in order to win a Irish Juvenile Nationals Title. This event will see Matthew Cheung, Sophia Noble, Scott Guildea, Vincent Pontanosa and Julia O'Reilly aim to win their second juvenile Irish Nationals. In 2017 these players won in the U13 Irish Nationals and each will be keen to continue their success in the U15 Irish Nationals.
Number 1 seed in the Boys' Singles Matthew Cheung will play against Mattie O'Flynn in round 2. If the seeded players win their opening matches Matthew will come up against Vincent Pontanosa in the Semi-Finals. Matthew and Vincent will also be pairing up in the Boys' Doubles. This strong pairing will face James Fleming and Tiarnan O'Rourke in the Quarter Finals.
Julia O'Reilly (1) will face Chloe Woods in her first match of the competition. If she wins her opening matches against tough competition, Julia will come up potentially against Neasa Flynn (3/4) in the semi-finals. U13 Girls' Singles winner from 2017 Sophia Noble will play her round 2 fixture against either Sarah Barry or Sinead O'Sullivan. The Girls' Doubles will see number one seeds Laura Comer and Lucy Xu take on Eva Bogoslovskaya and Stephanie Yen Lin Yip in the Quarter Finals. The U15 Nationals will see a very strong mixed doubles field with Matthew Cheung and Sophia Noble being seeded number 1. They will aim to progress through some tough opposition with Stuart McCollam and Lucy Xu also on their side of the draw.
Click here to see the draws for the 2018 U15 Irish Nationals
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