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Birch still in the hunt on two fronts at English Nationals

Chloe Birch took a giant leap towards defending both of her titles at the 2020 English National Badminton Championships in Winchester.

The 24-year-old booked her place in the final of the women’s singles and the semi-finals of the women’s doubles alongside Lauren Smith.

Entering the competition at the quarter-final stage, Birch faced a tough test in Grace King but beat the young star 21-17 21-16.

The defending champion, who has won the singles titles in succession for the past three years, then dispatched Abigail Holden in the semi-final defeating her 21-9 21-17 and she will now face Freya Redfearn.

In the women’s doubles Birch and Smith teamed up, as they did last year, and started their competition with a 21-12 21-7 win over Asmita Chaudhari and Annie Lado to seal a semi-final spot.  

The duo will be joined in the last four by Jenny Moore and Viki Williams, Jessica Hopton and Hope Warner, and Abigail Holden and Elizabeth Tolman.

Top seed and 2018 men’s singles finalist Alex Lane clinched a spot in the final beating Harry Huang and David Jones on his way.

He will face off against Johnnie Torjussen, who beat Neil Bhabuta in the quarter-finals and Ollie Baczala in the last four.

The mixed doubles saw Max Flynn and Fee Teng Liew secure their place in the final after they beat Matthew Clare and Hope Warner – who had knocked out number one seeds Greg Mairs and Viki Williams earlier in the day.

Tom Wolfenden and Jenny Moore will come up against Flynn and Liew having defeated Matthew Nottingham and Holly Williams 21-12 21-14 in the semi-final.

In the men’s doubles it was a case of all four seeds claiming the semi-final spots as Zach Russ and Steven Stallwood beat David Jones and Harley Towler.

Mairs and Wolfenden got the better of Alex Eames and Samuel Jones, Rory Easton and Ethan Van Leeuwen inflicted a 21-16 21-16 defeat on William Jones and Brandon Yap while Clare and Flynn secured victory over Baczala and Robert Golding.