A Successful Junior Event Modelled on the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games

In partnership with Central Region Badminton, Wellington North Badminton has hosted the inaugural Relay Competition for junior players across the Central Region (south of Eastland and Taranaki to Wellington).

The Badminton Relay Competition was first played at the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games, the relay is as much about learning and camaraderie as it is about competition. It was no different here at the Central Region edition, a first in New Zealand. 90 players from across the region entered this event. For many, this was their first event for the 2020 season since COVID-19 caused havoc around the world. Players were placed in to two grades, the Relay Cup and the Relay Shield. Players were then being placed in a total of twelves teams of comparable strength based on their rankings provided by each participating association. With each team consisting of seven to eight players of various associations, the competition encouraged joint strategising and bonding.

Each tie is decided on a cumulative total of points scored over eight matches (two Boys’ Singles, one Girls’ Singles, two Boys’ Doubles, one Girls’ Doubles and two Mixed Doubles), with the winning point being 88 at the end of the eighth match. The first match is for 11 points, and each subsequent match starts with the score of the previous one, with the winning points for the following games set for 22, 33, 44, 55, 66, 77, and finally 88.

This new and exciting format provided plenty of opportunities for both sides of the net to score crucial points to crawl back a win for their teams. The event has received fantastic positive feedback from both players and parents, with one parent saying that they felt dubious at the start but was sold by the end!

Here are the final standings of the day and the wining teams. For full result: https://bit.ly/2Cc4lNb

A huge thank you to Wellington Community Trust for their funding support to enable our community development team to host such an awesome event this school holidays, especially as the most anticipated NZ National Junior Team Championships has been cancelled for 2020 due to the impact of COVID-19. Also a huge shout out to Willis Wellington Hotel for providing special rates and affordable accommodation options for our out of town players.

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