Team Canada at the 2018 FX Forza Irish Para-badminton International
June 29, 2018
Para-badminton National Team competes at theIrish Para-badminton International
The FZ Forza Irish Para-badminton International 2018 was held in Dublin, Ireland last week and played host to over 150 players, including 5 proud Canadian athletes!
Representing Canada at the event was the Black Knight Canadian Para-badminton National Team – Yuka Choyku (BC), Bernard Lapointe (NB), Pascal Lapointe (QC), Wyatt Lightfoot (SK), and Richard Peter (BC), lead by Para-badminton Head Coach, Ram Nayyar (BC). With the entire team travelling together to compete at one of their first international events, Team Canada was ready to play the best in the world.
To start off the tournament was a relatively new partnership of Bernard Lapointe & Yuka Choyku (WH1/WH2), who teamed up in Mixed Doubles. Despite having not played much together, the pari was able to win (21-18, 21-16) over Scotland, to give Canada their first win on the week! Later that day Bernard would lose his opening Men’s Singles match only to rally back to win the second match against Iurii Sorokin (RUS) (21-14, 21-17).
Pascale Lapointe (SL4) would too lose his first Men’s Singles match against the second seed, only to bounce back and win against Dariusz Supel (POL) (21-8, 21-12) later that afternoon. Pascale would also leave the tournament with a win in Mixed Doubles with Caitlyn Dransfield (AUS), who beat a team from Ukraine (21-10, 21-11).
Bernard Lapointe and Richard Peter would team up in the Men’s Doubles event, despite never playing together before. The two were able to cover a lot of the court, but unfortunately were lacking in chemistry, resulting in a loss to a strong team from Finland in their first match, and another loss to a talented team from Indonesia.
Wyatt Lightfoot, the youngest member on the Para-badminton National Team, was able to gain valuable experience throughout the week, competing in Men’s Singles, Men’s Doubles with Jack Purvis (SCO), and Mixed with Diedre Nagle (SCO). Competing in all three events provided great experience competing against world class athletes.
Finally, on the Women’s side, Yuka Chokyu was able to transfer her talents from the tennis court to the badminton court. Not only did she win her opening match with Bernard, but was also able to take home the Bronze in Women’s Doubles alongside Fiona Christie (SCO), defeating a Russian team (21-13, 21-17).
“The Irish Para Championship was a great team event for our team to go to as we can see a marked improvement in many of our players, and it was noticed by fellow coaches and competitors” said Para Head Coach, Ram Nayyar. “We came home with one Bronze, lots of experience and fire within to train harder for our next event.”