Daniel Bethell stormed to gold at the 4 Nations Para Badminton International as he swept aside long-term rival Pramod Bhagat to prevail on home soil.
Playing at the EIS in Sheffield – where he and the rest of the Great Britain Para Badminton Squad train – Bethell’s SL3 men’s singles clash against India’s Bhagat was among the pick of Sunday’s matches.
A hard-fought contest was predicted but on the day it was the English shuttler who dominated, a 21-8 21-10 victory seeing him claim one of the biggest titles of his career.
“I’m elated with how I played – I thought that was one of the best games I’ve played in a long time,” said Bethell.
“Pramod, he’s such a great champion, we have such a big rivalry – I think that was our 16th meeting and we’ve played 14 finals. I knew it was going to be a competitive match and I was really happy with how I played.
“I just managed to get my gameplan out. I’ve worked really hard at what to do and how to do it, and it just paid off today. I knew exactly what I was going to do, and just managed to get through with a good win.
“To have all my friends and family here to watch me play, it’s pretty special. It’s the tournament I’ve been looking forward to all this year, and to win it, I’m just really pleased.”
Elsewhere, there were silver medals for Jack Shephard and Rachel Choong in the SH6 mixed doubles, and Krysten Coombs in the SH6 men’s singles.
Shephard and Choong faced a tough test against Indonesia’s Subhan Subhan and Rina Marlina, and after a tight opening game they were beaten 21-19 21-8.
Coombs had been one of the biggest stories of the week in Sheffield, beating compatriot Shephard and Miles Krajewski in the last eight and last four respectively to set up a final against pre-tournament favourite Krishna Nagar.
And Nagar showed just why he is the world’s best player at the moment in a 21-8 21-18 triumph, but there are still major positives for Coombs to take after reaching a first final of the season.
The 4 Nations is being held with special thanks to Yonex – the Official Equipment Partner of the 4 Nations Para Badminton International.