National Champs 1200

4 February, 2023

A busy opening day of action at the English National Championships saw several of Badminton England’s biggest names reach Sunday’s semi-finals.

Johnnie Torjussen’s quest for a third straight men’s singles title has so far been successful, with the top seed easing his way into the last four.

After a first round bye, Torjussen overcame Ethan Rose in straight games in the second round, before a comfortable quarter-final win versus Sid Palakkal.

Up next for the two-time defending champion will be Nadeem Dalvi, who defeated Charlie Castle and Kaylan Jensen to reach the last four.

One of the most notable results of the day saw Neil Bhabuta defeat second seed Rohan Midha to reach the last four.

After a comfortable win over Harry Jones, Bhabuta battled past Midha in a three-game thriller to progress to the semi-final stage.

Bhabuta will next face Cholan Kayan, who picked up convincing victories over Felix Wright and Heng Lin Ngan on Saturday.

With the top two seeds withdrawing, a fairly surprising semi-final line-up has been set in the women’s singles.

Among the most impressive performers was Leona Lee, who beat both Matilda Franklin and Maria Mitchell to keep her campaign going.

Lee will face Freya Patel-Redfearn on Sunday, with Patel-Redfearn having battled back from a game down to beat Tashvi Parab in a tight quarter-final on Saturday night.

Meanwhile, the second semi-final pits Alexandra Oprisan against the unseeded Kirby Ngan.

Oprisan has been in fine form so far, easing past Rosemary Allen in her round of 16 encounter before dropping just 12 points to Emily Beach in the last eight.

Following a round of 32 win over Lucy Brierley, Ngan received a second round walkover after the withdrawal of second seed Gauri Shidhaye, and then beat Jessica Allen to book a meeting against Oprisan.

Alongside new partner Rory Easton, Jess Pugh’s defence of the mixed doubles title from 2022 continues after the pair recorded straight game victories in their round of 16 and quarter-final encounters.

Easton and Pugh started with victory over Ryan Quek and Devon Minnis, before a last eight win against Alex Dillingham and Lizzie Tolman.

They face a tough semi-final against Steven Stallwood and Hope Warner, who rallied from a game down in their quarter-final against Samuel Jones and Abbygael Harris to reach the last four.

Second seeds Greg Mairs and Jenny Moore have also reached the semi-final stage without dropping a game, following victories over Ben Jarvis and Kiara Henry in their opener and then Ethan van Leeuwen and Chloe Birch in the quarter-finals.

Alex Green and Estelle van Leeuwen await for the second seeds in the semi-final, with the pairing also yet to drop a game in the tournament.

Top seeds Ben Lane and Sean Vendy’s defence of their men’s doubles crown is still on after they progressed to Sunday’s semi-final matches.

Lane and Vendy defeated Ewen Stephen and Jacob Weekes in the opening round before a quarter-final win over Koon Fung Kelvin Ho and Pak Yu Ng, with Ollie Baczala and William Jones up next.

Unseeded pairing Baczala and Jones have dropped just one game so far, beating Andrew Harrison and James Song in the last eight.

Second seeds Rory Easton and Ethan van Leeuwen are also still in action after two straight-game triumphs across Saturday.

Easton and Van Leeuwen eased past James Salter and Jack Taylor in the opening round, before defeating Ben Jarvis and Harry Lines in their quarter-final.

Up next for the second seeds are Alex Green and Brandon Yap, who shocked seeded pairing Steven Stallwood and Samuel Jones on Saturday..

After a round of 16 win against Oliver Butler and Ethan Hoskin, Green and Yap edged past Stallwood and Jones in a tense last eight encounter to seal their place in the final four.

Alongside her exploits in the women’s singles, Leona Lee will also be in women’s doubles action on Sunday after reaching the semi-final alongside Chloe Dennis.

Lee and Dennis defeated Rosemary Allen and Natalia Mitchell in the opening round, before a quarter-final triumph against Zoe Hallam and Zoe King.

Up next for them are second seeds Abbygael Harris and Annie Lado, who overcame a tight test from Sian Kelly and Kirby Ngan in the opening round before easing past Jessica Li and Katie Scott.

In a blockbuster quarter-final encounter, Chloe Birch and Jennifer Wallwork knocked out top seeds Jess Pugh and Estelle van Leeuwen.

After an opening victory versus Megan Brierley and Susanna Ogden, Birch and Wallwork battled past Pugh and van Leeuwen in three games to reach the last four.

Their semi-final opponents are Magda-Sabrina Lozniceriu and Devon Minnis, who knocked out seeded duo Kiara Henry and Sophie Watson in the last eight on Saturday night.

All results from Saturday can be found here

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