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A Mull teenager who trains mostly in a community hall stepped onto the senior national stage last weekend.
At the age of just 16 Nuria Clowes from Calgary competed in the singles, doubles and mixed doubles competitions at the Yonex Scottish National Badminton Championships in Perth.
Playing at the Bell’s Sports Centre the Tobermory High School pupil was knocked out in her opening singles match against Under 19s national champion Abbie Brooks who made it all the way to the finals where she was beaten by title defender Rachel Sugden.
Nuria and her partner Evan Kenny also made a first round exit in the mixed doubles following a tough match against Holly Newall Michael McGuire.
In the level doubles however the Mull teenager and her partner Eva Tremble progressed to the second round after beating Sophie Ford and Rachel Wedlock in straight sets (21-16, 21-19) before going out to Basia Grodynska and Tony Woods.
Mum Katja accompanied the promising teenager, dad and trainer David being confined to the house after suffering a prolapsed disc in his back.
Katja said: ‘It was just so exiting to be part of such a big event again and for Nuria to be playing in such a great venue amongst a very high calibre of players.
‘It was a joy to watch.’
Nuria played on the national junior event circuit for two years before Covid hit and since things got going again. She was given a place on the national sqad in September 2020 and has trained in Glasgow whenever possible.
Mostly however she has trained on Mull in the Dervaig Community Hall alongside younger brother Malik (14) under the watchful eye of dad David who is a professional tennis coach.
Malik won a bronze medal in the doubles event at the U15 Home Nations Quadrangular last October and in November last year Nuria won the Scottish Schools Badminton Union U18 singles and doubles in Wishaw.
‘We would have been totally lost without the hall,’ said Katja.
‘Without it we would have nowhere to train and nobody to practice against.’
Malik and Nuria are both in action again later this month with the former contesting the Highland Junior Championships at Fortrose this weekend and the latter contesting the National Under 19s Championship in Lanarkshire on Saturday, February 19.
Photograph: Sixteen-year-old Nuria won the Scottish Schools Badminton Union U18 singles in November last year. NO_T06_NuriaClowes