SLIGO PLAYERS Jonathon Dolan and David Walsh relished the opportunity to take part in the Futuer Series World Federation ranking event at Baldoyle, Dublin.In the Men's Singles, Jonathon got off to a great start, dispatching two opponents from Malta and Denmark in the qualifying rounds to make it into the main draw.
Significantly the Danish opponent, Hansen Soren Toft, was seeded number 5 for the qualifying event and thus was a great win for Dolan. Dolan progressed into the second round of the main draw when he defeated fellow Irish U-19 International player, Joshua Magee from Donegal. Next up was a formidable French opponent and 2nd seed for the main draw event, Maxime Michel. Michel won this encounter but not without brave resistance from Sligo's Dolan. David Walsh had a tough draw in the qualifying section of the Men's Singles as he played number 6 seed, Mika Kongas from Finland. Kongas justified his seeding and progressed from this match. Walsh competed well and the score line of 21-16, 21-16 reflected this.
Walsh teamed up with Ciaran Chambers (Ulster) in the Men's Doubles. They progressed into the 2nd Round after a close 3 set match against French opponents. In the 2nd Round, the number 2 seeded Welsh opponents, Daniel Font and Oliver Gwilt proved too strong for the Irish U-19 pair.
Dolan and his recently acquired partner, Allanah Stevenson took to the stage for the Mixed Doubles event. Stevenson, from Ulster, will travel to Japan later this month to compete in the BWF World Junior event with Dolan. The pair met the number 1 seeds in the Quarter Final; although the underdogs for this match they came out on top after a tough 3 sets.
Unfortunately, Dolan and Stevenson were not to make their 1st International Mixed Doubles Final on this occasion as they lost out to another Irish pairing, Keelin Hogan and Eddie Cousins in the semi final to an extremely close score line of 22-20, 1321, 22-20. Cousins and Hogan also progressed to win the Mixed Doubles event.
Jonathon Dolan has been selected by Badminton Ireland to travel as part of a 4 person Irish team to the World Junior BWF event in Chiba, Japan from 25th Oct to 3rd Nov.
The other members of the team are Joshua Magee (Donegal), Rachel Darragh (Donegal) and Allanah Stevenson (Lisburn). The Irish team have drawn Indonesia, Canada and Holland in their group. After the team event each player will compete in individual events. Dolan, who is already ranked 10th within the European Men's U-19 Singles will hope to improve his ranking at U-19 level; as will all the Irish players.