In Thursday’s European Women’s Team Championships match in Amsterdam, Irish number one World number Chloe Magee 46 stepped up on court to face Jana Ciznarova of Slovakia. Magee looked in great form and showed a master class of badminton as she eased through the Slovakian 21-10 21-6.
Next up for the Irish was Jennie King against Zuzana Orlovska. Jennie took time to get into the game and lost the first set 21-9. In the second set Orlovska continued to run down Kings shots as the Irish lady continued to try to breakdown the Slovakians defence. The Slovakian was able to keep the tempo high and won the game 21-13.
Alannah Stephenson was next up to try and sway the Match in favour of the Irish. 16 years old Alannah faced Martina Repiska in a marathon match where both ladies were not willing to give up! In the final set the Slovakian eventually edged out the victory 21-16 in a battle of a match lasting 50 minutes.
In the ladies Doubles with Ireland needing both rubbers for victory an exciting end was on the cards! The match followed the script when Irish number one ladies Sinead Chambers and Jennie King won an exciting three set epic 21-14 against Jana Ciznarova and Matina Repiska.
So it all came down to the inform Chloe Magee and the talented youth Alannah Stephenson who was looking to settle a score after the singles. Barbora Bobrovska and Zuzana Orlovska stood in the way of an Irish victory. Magee and Stephenson were up for this match showing the Irish fighting spirit throughout the match. With some amazing support from the Irish lads the girls dominated their opponents taking the tie with a 21-7 21-10 triumph.
Men’s team event: Ireland v Germany .
In the Men’s group, Irish number one world number 67 Scott Evans was first on court to face the number 2 seeded German line up. Scott was up against world number 14 Marc Zwiebler in what was going to be a tough match for Ireland. Scott started well and was leading the match at the 11 interval. From this point the German upped his pace and Evans struggled to compete losing the first 21-15. In the second Scott competed well in the rallies but Zwiebler continued to control the game with a 21-11 second game scoreline.
In the next of the singles Sam Magee came up against Lukas Schmidt world ranked 97. Once again this was going to be a tough challenge for Sam. In the opening set Sam exchanged some attacking play with the German but failed to get a lead on his opponent losing the opening set 21-11. In the next set Sam was tactically very good and led the match up until the mid game interval. From here the German showed some great power as he took the game to Magee. The German regained the lead and never looked back taking the game and match with a 21-14 scoreline.
Into the Doubles and the Irish represented by Evans and Magee came up against the World number 16 pairing of Ingo Kindervater and Johannes Schoettler. Evans and Magee were unable to keep up with the speed of the very physical German duo losing the first set 21-6. In the second set the Irish pair adapted well and tested the German pairing on occassion. However the Germans remained strong all the way to the end and saw off the Irish challenge winning the second game 21-13. The Germans showed their class moving through to the quarters and showed why they are much fancied for the final at this event.
The Irish team showed some great performances from all involved this week. For Irish Olympic hopefuls Scott Evans and Chloe Magee some well earned Olympic Qualyfying points were hard earned! Great experience for Alannah Stephenson winning her first senior International matches.
Ireland showed good team spirit throughout the tournament and will take a lot away from this event to build on for the future. Well done to all involved.