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Proudly wearing their SPRiNGFORDS team shirts, twenty-four young players from Edinburgh (including Russell Hume, son of one of our partners, John Hume) returned recently from Denmark after the experience of a lifetime, representing the City at the Tenth Aalborg Youth Games.
The players, aged between 12 and 15, stayed with Danish badminton families, and made many new friends while sampling the Danish way of life. Danes are the acknowledged masters of Badminton in Europe, and so, along with many happy memories, the young players returned home with lots of new ideas to add to their game. Three of the group are particularly delighted also to bring back medals to show off proudly.
The team was accompanied by Edinburgh Schools Badminton organisers Elaine Stalker, Bob Mackay and Douglas Walker. Douglas, who has attended all but one of the Youth Games, said: “I am a great fan of the Danish way of playing badminton, and their way of life in general, and I am delighted to have had the opportunity to share this enthusiasm with another group of youngsters – and also with Elaine and Bob, who were there for the first time. It has been a major effort by all concerned, and we acknowledge the generous assistance given by The City of Edinburgh Council, Rapid Repairs of Gullane, Springfords Chartered Accountants, Shoes to Adore of Dunfermline and the David Lloyd Centre – and also, of course, the parents.”
The Youth Games in Aalborg come round every four years, and are planned as a “Mini Olympics”, involving many sports, with teams from Aalborg’s “Friendship Cities”. In recent years, only Badminton has been able to accept the invitation. The other sports clearly don’t know what they are missing!