Hastings player stars in Latvia

Lydia Powell reached the women's singles semi-finals in Latvia. Picture courtesy Gary Baker
Lydia Powell reached the women's singles semi-finals in Latvia. Picture courtesy Gary Baker
  • Lydia Powell enjoys great run at Latvia International 2016
  • Hastings player reaches women’s singles semi-finals
  • Powell beats players from Latvia, Estonia and Czech Republic
  • 20-year-old comes within two points of defeating top seed from Belarus
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Badminton talent Lydia Powell produced a splendid performance at an international tournament on the continent.

The Hastings-based player reached the semi-finals of the women’s singles at the Yonex Latvia International 2016 before bowing out to the number one seed.

It was a great experience and a good level for me to show.

Lydia Powell

She said: “It was a great experience and a good level for me to show this week, something I want to bring with me and build on for next season.”

Powell began the event with an excellent 21-12, 21-19 victory over the number four seed, Kristine Sefere, from the host nation, last Friday. Later the same day she saw off Estonian player Mari Ann Karjus 21-10, 21-13 in round two.

The 20-year-old returned on Saturday morning to defeat Czech qualifier Tereza Svabikova 21-14, 18-21, 21-10 in the quarter-finals. Svabikova had stunned her fifth seeded compatriot Katerina Tomalova in round one.

Powell threatened to upset top seed Alesia Zaitsava when she edged the opening set of their semi-final on Saturday evening 21-19 and then led 18-12 in the second, at which stage she was three points from victory.

But her opponent from Belarus hit back to scrape through the second set 21-19 before taking the decider 21-12.

Powell has been training as part of the England singles squad alongside Fontaine Chapman, Raj Ouesph, Panuga Riou, Rhys Walker, Sam Parsons and Toby Penty.

She has also competed in events in Slovenia, France, Romania, Portugal and Austria in recent months having won her first senior international singles medal overseas at the Hatzor Isreal FS tournament last autumn.

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