West Norfolk Badminton Club members at the coaching weekend in Milton Keynes.

BADMINTON: A group of players from West Norfolk Junior Badminton attended a coaching weekend at the National Badminton Centre in Milton Keynes. 

Organised by squad manager Roger Cetti, it was the eighth annual trip and also involved players from the Norwich area.

The players ranged in age from 11 to 18, some of whom were returning for a sixth and seventh time.

They were privileged to be coached by former England star Paul Truman and former national performance coach, John Quinn.

Truman was ranked in the world’s top 30 in men’s doubles and was Canadian and Icelandic doubles champion.

Quinn was English national coach from 1999 to 2005, then national coach of France and later Scotland, before taking the role of head of England performance.

The group was accompanied by West Norfolk coaches and committee members, Robin Cooper, Norma Bowen, Jeremy Wakefield and Helaine Wyett, alongside former county players, now coaches, Adam Stubbing and Serena Verney.

The national coaches put the young players through their paces, teaching them high quality techniques in clears, smashes, drives, serves, net play and footwork, with an emphasis on singles tactics on the Saturday and doubles on the Sunday.

Towards the end of the weekend, the players used their new skills in a team competition, consisting of singles and doubles matches.

For the competition, they were joined by nine-time national singles champion Julia Mann, who took part alongside the head coaches. Despite being neck and neck throughout, Truman’s team won by two games.

The youngsters also went bowling in Milton Keynes. West Norfolk Juniors are sponsored by Roythorne’s Garage of North Wootton.