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November 6, 2023

The latest edition of the SCC Champion of Champions tournament saw new counties competing and first-time champions crowned across an enthralling weekend in Milton Keynes.

For the third year in a row, the National Badminton Centre played host to competitions across both Open and women’s singles, doubles and mixed doubles in a round robin style format, with semi-finals and finals after the group stages.

Nathan Rossiter and Steven Strickland missed out on making it three Champion of Champions Open Doubles titles in a row, losing in two sets to Hertfordshire’s Matthew Widdicombe and Harry Goode.

In a battle of the top two seeds, it was the second-ranked pair who came out on top, but they were made to work for victory, winning 21-16 21-18 shortly after a tense 21-17 23-21 semi-final tussle.

Victory was particularly sweet for Goode, who narrowly missed out on mixed doubles success last year when he and his mother Jo, a former Olympic bronze medallist, were beaten finalists.

Avon’s Magda-Sabrina Lozniceriu also struck gold for the first time, making it third time lucky in the women’s doubles with partner Susanna Ogden when defeating number one seeds Jessica Allen and Sophie Watson of Leicestershire.

Surrey pair Charlotte Atkins and Callum Mitchell reigned supreme in the mixed doubles, defeating Lancashire’s Vivien Cheng and Kar Hon Luu 21-15 21-16 in the final after both final pairs had beaten the seeds in their groups.

In the Open singles, Gloucestershire’s Jamie Pearcy defeated Hertfordshire’s Zack Bobrowksi following his withdrawal in the second set to injury.

Pearcy won 21-17 in the first game and led 15-6 in the second before the retirement.

And in the women’s singles, Sia Pandit brought home a gold for Yorkshire, defeating a familiar face in Mili Patel of Kent 21-18 21-12.

The pair know each other well from their partnership at the Under-15 National Championships last year, when they teamed up for silver in the women’s doubles.

This year’s Champion of Champions tournament witnessed 22 of the 45 Senior County Championship in action, with three competing for the very first time meaning only nine counties are yet to have been represented across the tournament’s three-year history.

A celebration of county badminton, the tournament has quickly become a significant date in the calendar with players exposed to some of the country’s finest including former England internationals and Olympic athletes.

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