(Photo: Håkan Waltgård)
A Swedish Para badminton tournament with a twist
Date: 3/17/2020 3:10 PM
Published by : Alan Raftery
Last weekend, there was a Swedish Para badminton competition debut at the Täby RacketCenter where participants came from Sweden, Norway and Finland.

The Para badminton community is buzzing with excitement in 2020, as everyone is looking forward to another big debut – the first participation of Para badminton at the Paralympics. This is why it is brilliant to see so many firsts for Para badminton popping up around Europe. 

The Swedish Para badminton event was organised by Täby Badminton at the Täby RacketCenter outside Stockholm. A total of 12 participants, including six in the standing class and six in the wheelchair class. Peter Axelsson, Club Manager at Täby Badminton stated. 

-It was a small but very successful start to something that we hope to grow in the future.

Give it a go!
In a lovely twist to the tournament, all players also had a chance to play against each other, which made the matchups sometimes a little uneven as the players had different disabilities. Someone with one disability could meet someone who had a completely different disability. Axelsson explains this setup. 

-It was decided that everyone will meet everyone in the different classes so that there were many more matches.

Antti Kärkki from Finland won the singles gold in the standing class, where he won all his five pool matches. However, the match against Magnus Veigas from Sollentuna, Sweden, was very close. As too was his encounter against a very talented 12-year-old in Dilan Jacobsson from Trollhättan, Sweden. Home player Erik Söderdahl took gold in doubles, along with singles champion, Antti Kärkki.

There was also Finnish dominance in the wheelchair class where World Cup players Harri Isomäki and Kimmo Sirviö came first and second. Together they also won doubles. In the doubles class, they were challenged by the two Swedish junior national team players, Emil Söderdahl and Teodor Hylander, who tested what it was like to play Wheelchair Badminton, but they struggled to adapt and move quickly with the chairs. Axelsson adds that.

-Many individuals took part in some wheelchair games and it was anything but easy! The tournament was paused for one hour for a joint dinner that appeared on a long table in the competition hall. So, overall, it was a very nice day at the Täby RacketCenter, which ended with a great awards ceremony.

Axelsson is proud of what was achieved and gives his closing remarks after a successful Para badminton event. 

-We will work for and hope that Para badminton in Täby and Sweden grows and will see this competition as a big step on this road.

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