Over the past two months, members of the Australian Falcons have spent time traveling, training, and playing tournaments across Europe gaining valuable international experience and world ranking points.
With the Netherlands National Training Centre as base camp, eleven players; a mixture of experienced campaigners and young up and coming players and National Coach; Leanne Choo have chased a number of tournaments across the continent with varying results.
Flying the Australian flag by taking out the title at the FZ Forza Dutch International 2023, Mixed Doubles pair Gronya Sommerville and Kenneth Choo are continuing to show they are a mixed doubles force on the international stage, backing up their win at the VICTOR Oceania Championships in February. Their win in the final over English pair Brandon Zhi Hao Yap & Annie Lado showed determination and patience, winning in two games 21-18 23-21.
Enjoying good form at the same event was Women’s Doubles pair Tiffany Ho & Angela Yu, who reached the semifinals, playing against Chinese Taipei pair Hsu Yin-Hui/Lee Chih Chen. Though competitive, their opposition had a well-planned approach, taking the match 21-17 21-14 and eliminating the Australians.
Reaching the quarterfinals at the 58 Portugal International Championships 2023, Tiffany Ho’s first two women’s singles matches were challenging but successful before being defeated by the top seed. Rayne Wang & Angela Yu in the mixed doubles won two matches in qualifying to take their place in the main draw and continued their winning way before being knocked out in the quarterfinals.
At the Orleans Masters Badminton 2023, a World Tour 300 event in France, Gronya Sommerville and partner, Kaitlyn Ea qualified for the main draw of the women’s doubles but were unable to progress past the first round.
The Falcons players also played in the Orlen Polish Open 2023, an International Challenge level tournament with a large and strong entry with no Australian player making it past the second round of the main draw.
The Australian Falcon’s who travelled to Europe were: Kenneth Choo, Gronya Sommerville, Angela Yu, Tiffany Ho, Rayne Wang, Kaitlyn Ea, Joyce Choong, Jacob Schueler, Nathan Tang, Keith Edison and Jack Yu.
These players all returned to Australia late April and played in the National Team Championships (Clendinnen Shield) and the National Individual Championships with the following results:
Ricky Tang – winner MS, Tiffany Ho – winner WS, Kenneth Choo & Rayne Wang – runner-up MD, Joyce Choong & Angela Yu – runner-up WD, Kenneth Choo & Gronya Somerville – runner-up XD