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Sport In Brief: Badminton legend honoured

PUBLISHED: 12:41 08 April 2010 | UPDATED: 11:37 23 August 2010

ONE of the country s most successful badminton players has been inducted into the sport s hall of fame. Ex-England international Sue Whetnall, 67, of West Kingsdown, was honoured by the World Badminton Federation at a special dinner at the National Indoo

ONE of the country's most successful badminton players has been inducted into the sport's hall of fame.

Ex-England international Sue Whetnall, 67, of West Kingsdown, was honoured by the World Badminton Federation at a special dinner at the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham to mark the 100th anniversary of the All England Championships - badminton's equivalent of Wimbledon.

Her husband Paul, himself a former England international and Olympic coach, was also decorated on the night by the lord mayor of Birmingham with the English Badminton Award for services to the sport.

"I was absolutely gobsmacked," admitted Mrs Whetnall, whose glittering career included five All England Championship doubles titles, five gold medals, two silvers and a bronze at the European Badminton Championships and Commonwealth Games golds in Edinburgh in 1970 and New Zealand four years later. "It was such a surprise. Paul and I were just sitting down, minding our own business, when - all of a sudden - my name was called out.

"I had my shoes off because my feet were killing me. So, I went up to collect the award barefoot. I had to ask the photographer not to take pictures with my feet in."

GRAVESEND RFC U12s will be rubbing shoulders with some of the country's top rugby talent on Saturday, writes Mike Cubitt.

The Gees' youngsters will form a guard of honour for Harlequins at the Stoop at the start of their Guinness Premiership fixture against Leeds.

Donning their full Gravesend kit, the boys will form a tunnel while waving Harlequins flags, which the players run through as they enter the field of play. The boys will then get to see first hand how it's done by the pros when they watch the match.

The day out - which also took place last year - was the brainchild of coach Dave Slade and his wife Tracey - who are both season-ticket holders at the club.

Last season, they took part in a coaching clinic with current Quins first XV squad member Seb Stegman. Mrs Slade said: "The boys really seem to enjoy the day out at a Premiership club, watching some top-class rugby and meeting the players."

EBBSFLEET United Ladies Football Club are staging five and seven-a-side ladies' tournaments this summer.

The competitions, which will be hosted at the new 3G facility at Kicks Soccer Centre in Strood, take place on Sunday, July 18 from 9.30am until 6pm.

Entry for the five-a-side event is £35 per team, with a maximum of eight players in each squad. Clubs can enter as many sides as they wish.

The seven-a-side tournament costs £45 per team, but only one can be submitted per club with 10 in each squad.

Players must be signed to the clubs they are representing and aged 16 or over.

Changing rooms will be available in the leisure centre as well as a bar, refreshments and hot and cold food.

Six purpose-built 3G five-a-side pitches and one seven-a-side pitch will be used for the matches.

The surface is ideal for any weather and helps with fitness building as the fence surrounding each pitch means the ball is constantly in play. If you are interested in taking part, email Amanda Spry at: ladies@eufc.co.uk by Friday, July 2.

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