Harare, Zimbabwe – December 12, 2023
The U-15 badminton arena in Harare witnessed a spectacular display of skill and sportsmanship as the individual events unfolded at the All Africa U-15 Championships. Following the riveting team event finals on December 11th, where South Africa emerged victorious over Egypt, participants took a delightful break in the camaraderie of an AirBadminton Friendly Championship organized by the BCA on December 12th—a welcome respite for the young athletes after intense team battles.
Key Moments from Day One
Tunisian Triumph in Epic Battle
Anas Khayati and Cyrine El Hachemi of Tunisia etched their names into the annals of thrilling badminton with a nail-biting victory against Carl Malcom Petros and Kelly Kamoto of Zimbabwe. The Tunisian duo emerged victorious in a closely contested battle: 18-21, 21-10, 21-13.
Anas Khayati and Cyrine El Hachemi of Tunisia & Carl Malcom Petros and Kelly Kamoto Zimbabwe
Ricardo Vigario’s Commanding Display
South Africa’s Ricardo Vigario, a standout performer in the team event final, sustained his winning momentum with a commanding victory in the singles category against Tinotenda Alexio Mubaiwa of Zimbabwe: 21-11, 21-4.
Chloe Lai’s Riveting Encounter
Ricardo’s mixed doubles partner, Chloe Lai, engaged in a fierce duel against Algeria’s Chiraz Halimi. The match went the distance, with Halimi emerging victorious in a gripping encounter: 17-21, 21-16, 21-16.
Mauritius Triumphs in Decisive Contest
The Mauritian pair of Leo Jean-Mathieu Douce and Prajna Ragoonundun faced formidable competition against Ahmed Farw and Rahima Hussien of Egypt. In a spirited match, the Mauritian duo clinched victory in a deciding game: 21-18, 15-21, 21-12. After their thrilling victory, Leo and Prajna expressed, “The match was really good. We managed to keep our composure even after losing the second game and came back stronger in the third set.”
Leo & Prajna from Mauritius
Misha Bredell Shines in Mixed Doubles
Misha Bredell, the star of the Boys’ Singles in the team event final, teamed up with Yi Wen Li in the mixed doubles category. The South African duo dominated their opponents, Mohamed Noaman and Mira Shater from Egypt: 21-7, 21-10.
Round of 16 Thrillers
The Round of 16 in the All Africa U-15 Badminton Championships was a showcase of intense battles and skillful maneuvers on the courts of Harare, Zimbabwe. As the young shuttlers vied for supremacy, spectators were treated to a spectacle of badminton prowess. In the Boys Singles category, matchups like Omar Elsabban (EGY) against Omar Sehila (ALG) and Moamen Khaled (EGY) facing Jordy Kris Wann Hua Cheong Fon Youn (MRI) delivered nail-biting three-set thrillers, showcasing the tenacity and competitive spirit of these emerging talents.
The Girls Singles encounters were equally riveting, with standout performances like Malaika Mohamed (EGY) overcoming Pavany Payen (MRI) in a tight contest. The resilience displayed by these young athletes is a testament to their dedication and the high level of competition in the U-15 category. Notable matchups in the Boys and Girls Doubles, as well as the Mixed Doubles, added to the drama, underscoring the depth of talent on display.
As each match unfolded, it became evident that the journey through the Round of 16 was not merely a progression in the tournament but a showcase of the young talents’ skills, strategies, and ability to handle pressure. The courts bore witness to thrilling rallies, strategic play, and moments of sheer brilliance, setting the stage for the quarter-finals with heightened anticipation. The Round of 16 was a chapter in the tournament’s narrative that resonated with the essence of youth badminton, where every point carried the weight of ambition and the promise of future greatness.
Omar Elsabban vs. Omar Sehila
A thrilling encounter unfolded between Egypt’s Omar Elsabban and Algeria’s Omar Sehila. The match went the distance, with Elsabban securing victory: 21-17, 18-21, 21-15.
Moamen Khaled vs. Jordy Kris Wann Hua Cheong Fon Youn
Egypt’s Moamen Khaled, seeded number 4, faced a challenging match against Mauritius’ Jordy Kris. The Egyptian emerged triumphant after a disputed three sets: 19-21, 21-16, 21-12.
Ahmed Farw vs. Taha Ben Ali
Another closely contested match featured Egypt’s Ahmed Farw against Taha Ben Ali of Tunisia. The Egyptian secured victory in a deciding game: 21-19, 13-21, 21-16.
Malaika Mohamed vs. Pavany Payen
In the Girls Singles round of 16, a captivating match unfolded between Egypt’s Malaika Mohamed (seeded number 3) and Mauritius’ Pavany Payen. The Egyptian emerged victorious: 17-21, 21-9, 21-6. Malaika shared her joy,
“I am very happy that I won my round of 16 match today. Tomorrow, I will play the quarter-finals. I managed to play all my shots, and my coach’s advice really helped me, especially after I lost the first game. Now all focus is on tomorrow’s match.”
What to expect tomorrow
As the curtain falls on an exhilarating first day at the All Africa U-15 Badminton Championships, the tournament has set the stage for an exciting journey ahead. The emerging stars have already displayed exceptional skills, determination, and resilience, promising a thrilling continuation.
Tomorrow’s quarter-finals are anticipated to be a battleground where resilience meets skill, and determination faces off against strategy. Every shuttlecock sent across the net carries with it the aspirations of the players and the hopes of their respective nations. The badminton community eagerly awaits the next set of enthralling encounters that will undoubtedly shape the destiny of the All Africa U-15 Championships.
As the tournament progresses, the BCA invites all enthusiasts to stay tuned, witness the unfolding drama, and join in celebrating the spirit of sportsmanship and youthful exuberance that defines the U-15 badminton championships in Harare, Zimbabwe. The journey has just begun, and the best may yet be in store as the individual event continues to captivate hearts and minds alike.