Disability Junior National Championships 1200

June 20, 2023

Junior players from across England were in action at the first-ever Disability Junior National Championships this weekend.

Held at the English Institute for Sport in Sheffield on Saturday, secondary age (Years 7-11) junior badminton players with a physical impairment had the chance to play and compete in a new event, marking the first time many of them had such an opportunity to play competitively.

Before heading to Sheffield, players were able to attend two regional training days delivered by their Regional Disability Coach. This gave them to chance to play and train with other players from their region.

The Disability Junior National Championships was for new players to get involved in our sport and play some fun competition. Seven regions competed in the event across four teams, with 12 players representing their region.

The event has grown the playing base of disabled junior players accessing badminton locally and long term will support the growth of Para badminton.


Regional Disability Coach Richard Morrissey said: “Players have been able to take part in a competitive but fun tournament, and it’s also encouraged new players to be introduced to a sport they may not have had access to before.

“This will be a great foundation that we can build on over the next few years to raise the profile of disability and Para badminton in England.”

For the players involved, the competition provided not only a chance to meet new people and have fun on court, but also inspire them to continue playing badminton.

Samuel, a player representing the East & Midlands team, had such a positive experience that, his parent, Andrew Gray stated, “Samuel wants to go all the way and get on the Para pathway, and this has been really eye-opening on what he needs to achieve to get there.”

Samuel himself added: “I’ve enjoyed winning today! I’ve enjoyed learning and playing with my partner Finn, he’s taught me a lot.”

“My coaches have been great coaches for the team. I’d love to play again next year.”

Junior 120

Maelle Vallon-Puszkarz, who took part in the event, said: “I really liked the atmosphere at the event. I’ve enjoyed playing as part of a team. I think the coaches are really nice and my team has been great.

“Everyone has been getting to know each other, players, coaches and parents.”

And it was not just the players themselves who enjoyed their day, with parents of those involved also taking a great deal from the action in Sheffield.

One parent commented: “It’s been a really well-put-together event. As a parent, it’s been great to see my child learning what he needs to do on court and enjoy the sport.

Junior Champs 1200

“It’s been social, fun, and great to spend some time together. These events are so important and this team event, and badminton, is a great sport for socialising with other players.

The event was a great success with the South Central & South West region winning.

Another parent commented; “We’d like to express our thanks to the team of coaches, umpires, and players for a great day of badminton today.”

“Thank you for being so inclusive in the true sense of the word and being flexible and understanding about my child’s needs. She loved her day of badminton, and her confidence and enthusiasm has been lifted.” – Pippa Wauthier, parent and Dwarf Sport Association UK Region Co-ordinator.

“This has been a great opportunity to raise the profile of disability badminton.” – Richard Morrissey, Regional Disability Coach.

More information on how to get involved in disability badminton can be found on Badminton England website here.

If you’ve seen this and would like to know how you can get involved next year, please contact inclusion@badmintonengland.co.uk. You do not need to have prior playing experience to be involved in this event next year.

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