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Loughborough Sport claim their first NBL win against a strong Birmingham side

Match Report: Loughborough Sport 4-1 Birmingham Lions

Loughborough Sport, with the support of a vocal away crowd, claimed their first victory in the National Badminton League (NBL), after beating Birmingham Lions 4-1.

First up in the Barclaycard Arena was Marcus Ellis and Lauren Smith, two of our current national champions, who won their opening mixed doubles 3-0 against Nico Ruponen and Alyssa Lim.

Women’s singles was up next with Linda Zetchiri playing Lions’ Fontaine Chapman, a recent finalist in the English Nationals. Chapman managed to steal the win from Zetchiri with a score of 3-0, to level up the playing field for the Lions.

Chloe Birch and Jenny Wallwork fought back for Loughborough in the women’s doubles in a stunning display to oust Heather Olver and Jess Hopton 3-1, giving Loughborough the advantage of the night.

Henri Hurskainen, in the penultimate match of the evening, lifted the visitors once more in a tight encounter in the men’s singles with a 3-2 win over Ben Beckman.

The final match of the evening saw Loughborough’s Peter Briggs and Harley Towler beat previously undefeated men’s doubles pair Gary Fox and Koen Ridder 3-1.

Speaking after the match Jenny Wallwork said:

We were really happy to get the point on the board, as it’s a bit tense with the matches being close. We knew that was going to be a hard game so we are happy to come through with a win.

Henri Hurskainen on the loud support of the Loughborough fans said:

It started in the first home match when I beat Raj (Ouseph). They help me a lot and I feel like I get extra support from the guys, it’s almost like having an extra player with me.

The victory sees Loughborough now on nine points and puts the team in a great position to qualify for the play-offs.

Loughborough Sport will be back in action seeking a play-off spot on the 27th April at home against Milton Keynes. Student tickets £2.50, concessions £5 and adults £8. Buy your tickets here.