Ghana wins bronze at 2019 All Africa Badminton Mixed Team Champs

Ghana wins bronze at 2019 All Africa Badminton Mixed Team Champs

DAN-SAM

Ghana’s badminton team won bronze at the All Africa Mixed Team Championship held in the Nigerian city of Port Harcourt.

The victory qualified the team for the 2019 All Africa Games to be staged in Rabat, Morocco, from August 19 to 31.

The Ghanaian team made history by qualifying to the semi-finals of the April 22 to 28 competition for the first time since its inception in 1988. But they lost the final berth to Nigeria after losing three out of five events in the semi-finals.

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Nigeria won gold after thumping Mauritius 3-2 in the final to emerge as overall champions followed by Mauritius and Ghana in that order.

The Ghanaian contingent, drawn in Group C alongside Algeria, Cote d’Ivoire and Togo, started the 12-nation competition with 5-0 thumping of Cote d’Ivoire in the team events last Monday.

Ghana’s number one seed, Daniel Sam, triumphed 21-14, 21-8 against his Ivorian opponent Zolobe Alex in the opening game of the men’s singles event, with teammate Grace Atipaka also winning 21-8, 21-8 over N’Dia Aicha.

Ghana finished the rest of the categories victorious after Daniel Doe combined with Daniel Sam to record a 21-10, 21-9 victory over Cote d’Ivoire’s pair Agnimel Akpa Jelome and Ousmane Overdroogo in the men’s doubles division, while Jennifer Abitty partnered Grace Atipaka to win 21-9, 21-11 in the women’s doubles category.

In the mixed doubles event, Ghana’s pair of Ebenezer Andrews and Eyram Migbodzi defeated Doulo Lou Annick and Ousmane Ovedroogo 21-12, 21-13 to seal the impressive feat against their Ivorian opponents.

The Ghanaian team continued the impressive wins against their Togolese counterparts, as after Grace Atipaka  defeated Dare Malika in the women’s singles event, Ebenezer Andrew defeated Issa Azim 21-5, 21-3 in the men’s singles, while Michael Baah partnered Perpetual Quaye to thump Adjima Rolande and Amoussoli Vivien 21-5, 21-10 in the mixed doubles.

In the men’s doubles, Emmanuel Botwe paired up with George Ayitey to post a 21-4, 21-1 win against the pair of Issa Azim and Adjima Rolande, while Eyam Migbodzi and Jennifer Abitty walloped Dare Malika the pair of Amoussili Vivien 21-0, 21-6 in the women’s doubles.

The Ghanaians repeated the feat against Algeria in their final Group C ties as they won three out of five events and finished top of the group table to set a date with Group D winners South Africa in the quarter-finals.

Team Ghana beat South Africa 3-2 in the quarter-finals but lost to the hosts in the semi-finals.

“We are very excited about our performance. When we were coming for this tournament, as a team, we decided that we will make it to the final so we prepared very well. We decided that we were not coming to relax but we will work hard to make it to the final but unfortunately we lost the final ticket to Nigeria.

That said, I want to add that we are all happy to have made it to the semi-final and won bronze at the end of the day,” said the team captain, Daniel Sam, over the telephone.

Ghana's High Commissioner to Nigeria, Alhaji Rashid Bawa visited the team in Port Harcourt

Ghana’s participation in the championships will enable the athletes obtain more points on the Badminton World Federation (BWF) ranking towards 2019 Tournaments in Benin, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana and the 2019 All Africa Games.

The Nigeria Championship also served as qualifications to the BWF World Mixed Team tournament scheduled for China from May 19 to 29.

Source: Bea Laryea (Graphic Sports)

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