England’s top para badminton players will be back in action this week heading over to Dublin for the first ever Four Nations Para Badminton International.
The landmark event running through to Sunday this week, is yet another sign of continued growth of the sport after debuting at the Paralympics in Tokyo nearly a year ago.
And once again English shuttlers are well placed to challenge for medals.
Dan Bethell, a silver medallist from Japan and Jack Shephard will both be in action in the Irish capital, with Shephard seeded first in the men’s SH6 draw, in which Krysten Coombs and Isaak Dalglish will also compete.
Coombs also managed to bring home a medal from Tokyo securing a bronze and will be looking for further success in Ireland.
Chesterfield shuttler Shephard, who has three World Championship gold medals to his name, will need to navigate Group A which also includes France’s Charles Noakes and Hong Kong’s Wong Chun Yim.
Bethell is seeded second in the SL3 classification, only behind World No.1 Pramod Bhagat – the man who beat him in the Paralympic gold medal match in Tokyo.
The Englishman starts his tournament in Group B, where he will take on Ukrainian Oleksandr Chyrkov and Manoj Sarkar of India.
In the women’s singles SH6, Rachel Choong will be looking to back up her second seed placing. Her campaign will begin with two Group B matches with Daria Bujnicka (Poland) and Nina Kozlova (Ukraine) while her and Coombs will also partner in the mixed doubles.
In the WH1 men’s singles England’s David Follett will also take to the court, drawn in Group C alongside fourth seed Lee Sam Seop and Keita Nishimura of Japan.
Follett will also compete in the mixed doubles in the WH1 classification, where he will team up with Heidi Manninen of Finland.
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