Stonehaven octogenarian nets two silvers

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At 80, most people are happy to relax and take it easy.

John Merritt, who plays badminton at Stonehaven Leisure Centre, is one octogenarian who bucks the trend. He has recently returned from playing in the 2011 US Senior International in Miami, Florida.

John competed in singles and doubles in both the over 75s and over 80s playing nine matches in four days!

John had a good start winning his first singles match to set himself up for more competitive matches. Having secured the silver medal in the men’s over 80s doubles, it came down to his final singles match for the prize of another silver medal.

With all his family and friends following his progress daily online, the pressure was on! After a tight first set, John kept his cool to win 21-18 and completed the win with a more comfortable 21-13 score in the second set.

Joan Prieur Aberdeenshire Council Badminton Development Officer said, “John is a great role model for the junior players and is a big supporter of his grandchildren Scott and Colleen Duncan of Stonehaven, both keen junior players who attend the Aberdeenshire performance and development squads.”

John returned home a little sore but happy with his first venture into International Seniors badminton. Having made some good friends, he is already making plans for his next tournament.

John said: “If I can get my legs in better shape and get some singles practice I may compete in the 80+ in Ontario, Canada in April 2011.”