After their title successes in Wycombe last weekend, there is no time to bask in a job well done for new English national champions, Chloe Birch, Toby Penty, Marcus Ellis and Lauren Smith
The four have travelled from Buckinghamshire straight to Barcelona where they contest the newly named Barcelona Spain Masters – a Super 300 event on the HSBC BWF World Tour – this week.
Having won their first national title together, Ellis and Smith are the Mixed Doubles top seeds in Spain and open with a bye into round two where they will face Malaysia’s Pang Ron Hoo and Cheah Yee See. But there is no such down time for each of the other three, each of whom compete in the main draw’s opening round.
Chloe Birch successfully retained her Womens Singles national crown on Sunday but she returns for the Women’s Doubles with the fit again Jenny Moore. They face Japan’s Misato Aratama and Akane Watanabe. Birch's singles mission in Spain ended early with a round one defeat to Germany’s Yvonne Li.
New Mens Singles champion Toby Penty, seeded eighth, plays Czech Republic number one Adam Mendrek for the first time in seven years, as he looks to climb back into the world top 50.
2018 Men’s Doubles National finalist Greg Mairs also returns to action, albeit in Mixed Doubles, and he and Jenny Moore have already entered round two with a 21-5 21-5 win over home pair Bernat Amaya and Lara Lucas.
Five other England programme players expected to compete in Spain have not travelled due to injury and illness sustained ahead of the English Nationals.