Walthamstow Hall win national Championships

Walthamstow Hall’s U14 badminton team triumph at National Schools Championships finals

Walthamstow Hall’s U14 girls badminton team are National Schools Champions after a stunning performance at the competition finals, held at the National Badminton Centre in Milton Keynes on Sunday 29th April.  Their incredible win means that the girls are now eligible to compete at European level!

The team comprising of students; Sofia Bao, Hannah Sarshar, Annabel Sykes, Holly Williams and Rosie Williamson, had been totally dominant in the qualifying rounds, not even dropping a game until the final of the regional competition.

They maintained this dominance into the Championships Finals. In the first round, the Walthamstow Hall team beat both Queen Elizabeth School and St Michael’s Church of England School 5-0.  This ensured them a finish in the top three schools in England.

The students then faced the winners of the trophy for the previous two years:  Arden School, whom they beat 5-0. 

The final against Colchester High School was tougher, but Wally still won with a very convincing 4-1 score line. 

Walthamstow Hall’s Head of Sport Rachael Leggett said the result was all the more impressive when you considered that more than 6,400 schools entered this national schools competition (across all age groups) every year. She praised the girls for their consistently high standard of play.

She added “Special mention must go to Jo Muggeridge for her outstanding coaching and the exceptional level of commitment she has given to developing badminton at Wally.  Within three years of her coaching here, Wally are National Champions.”

This talented team of U14 students have all agreed their win has made them even keener to continue playing badminton.  Hannah Sarshar said, “At first it felt like just another competition, but then once we’d won it, it began to sink in that this meant we were the best in England.  It was so exciting and it has definitely inspired us to keep training.” 

The National Schools Championship is a culmination of the School Games Programme, which aims to keep competitive sport at the heart of schools.  This year is the 10th Anniversary of the Kent School Games where more than 30,000 young people in primary, secondary and special needs education take part in the countywide event.

The Kent School Games is a biennial sporting extravaganza, set up in 2008 as a Kent County Council Olympic and Paralympic legacy project to inspire schools and young people to participate in competitive school sport.

NOTES:  Walthamstow Hall is an independent girls’ day school in Sevenoaks, Kent.  It was founded in 1838 for the daughters of missionaries.

Credit: Rise Communications

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