By Manav Krishna Kallamvelli Vasanth
On Friday 3 March 2023, an U12A badminton fixture against the Isleworth and Syon school took place at Hampton School. Hampton emerged victorious having won 23 games, compared to Isleworth’s 13. This was the first and last badminton match for the Hampton Badminton U12s, and they were really looking forward to starting and ending the season on a high. As well as going into the game nervously, they were extremely excited and wanted to put their best foot forward.
Manav Krishna Kallamvelli Vasanth (one of the Hampton badminton players) said: “We were aware that the Isleworth and Syon school had a very good coach, who trained the Hounslow Borough team, and we also knew that they would not leave the game to us as they had come quite far to Hampton, meaning that losing without a fight was not an option.”
Overall, Hampton and Isleworth knew that this was going to be a tight set of badminton games, and it would be a good fight to see which side wins. There were six pairs set out for Hampton (it was a double’s match, only in pairs), each playing at the same time (four pairs of three and two pairs of two playing). The school that had the greatest number of pairs winning, would win the game.
The first game that each pair played went well. Five out of six pairs for Hampton had won their games, which made for an extremely promising start. As well as winning these five games, it was by a huge margin as one of the pairs (Manav Krishna and Kian Thomas) had won their first game 21 points to seven.
As the games unfolded, unfortunately, one of the opponent’s players had got injured in the eye while playing a backhand shot. This resulted in one of Hampton’s players going over to play for the Isleworth and Syon school. After each pair had played three games each, it looked like Hampton were cruising ahead, and heading towards a maiden victory.
However, after more than half of the games played, there was a sudden lack of concentration by the Hampton players, and when the pairs were playing their fifth game, five out of six games were lost. At this point, it could have been anyone’s game as Hampton had 17 games, and Isleworth had won 13. If the home side suffered another lapse, the game would have been taken away.
However, thanks to an inspirational team talk, the players felt charged up going into their final match. Using all the techniques taught by the badminton coaching staff, Hampton crossed over the line winning 23 games to 13.
The leading stand-out performance was Manav Krishna Kallamvelli Vasanth’s pair with Kian Thompson, winning six games out of six. Overall, a brilliant set of matches were played between Hampton School and Syon School, resulting in a lot of things that both schools could take away from the fixture.