The 2012 – 2013 season has been a very successful one for the CAI Badminton club.
On Friday 8 March both the Senior and Minor teams were crowned Ulster Schools’ Badminton Champions after a long and hard fought season. The Senior team defeated a very strong RBAI team 4-2 to win the Division 2 Senior title and the Minor team beat Ballyclare High 4-2 to become Minor champions as well. This enabled both teams to represent Ulster at the All Ireland finals in Gormanstown, Co Meath where they took on teams from Leinster, Connaught and Munster.
The CAI Senior badminton team of Simon Curry (captain), Paul Moore, David Moore and Edward Dorrans became Irish Schools’ Division 2 Champions on March 20th. The team played their fist match against St Nathy’s, Ballaghadareen who were an unknown force but the team surpassed themselves, winning both doubles matches thus going into their singles with confidence. The pleasing result of a 5-1 win was an excellent start to the competition.
The second match was against St Anne’s, Killaloe from Munster and the team continued their success by storming to a 5-1 victory. This was a fantastic result making the team very determined to remain victorious going into the final against the Leinster team, who were also unbeaten.
The Coleraine Inst boys proved to be the stronger of the two though and their experience and determination saw them just edge ahead of the opposition winning the match 4-2 to lift the trophy for the first time in the school’s history. This is an excellent achievement for the boys, for the school and for Badminton in the Coleraine area.
The Minor team of Gareth Henderson, Rhys Knox, Bradley Jackson and Adam Wallace played their first match against Kilkenny College which resulted in a 3-3 draw. Next they played a very strong Cork team who won 6-0 which left the boys in battle for the runner up spot with one match left to play. Number one singles Gareth Henderson played an outstanding game which went all the way to 29 points all. Gareth battled on but lost the final point.
The final games score was 4-2 to CAI which resulted in the boys narrowly missing out on runner up place which went to Kilkenny. However the boys played extremely well in this their first appearance at the Irish finals and it was a great achievement for them as individuals and as a team and one which they can be proud of.
Thanks to Miss G Watters for organising the matches and transport, Mrs S Jackson for coaching the teams and to Mrs R Smyth for her support during practice sessions in the early part of the season.