Badminton teams up for the challenge

Scottish badminton star Susan Egelstaff.
Scottish badminton star Susan Egelstaff.

SCOTLAND have named their badminton squads for the European men’s and women’s team championships in Amsterdam from February 14 to 19.

The women’s team includes newly-crowned national champion Kirsty Gilmour, who won the women’s singles yesterday (Sunday) for the first time at the Yonex Scottish National Championships.

The women’s team is also set to benefit from the experience of Susan Egelstaff who will be adding to her 87 international caps along with doubles specialists Jillie Cooper and Imogen Bankier.

The line-up is completed by Linda Sloan and Rita Yuan Gao, who has been coaching in St Gallen in Switzerland for the last six months.

This means Scotland will be able to field a strong team when they take on England in their opening contest of this qulifying event for the Uber Cup Finals in Wuhan, China in May.

The top three teams for the finals and Scotland, who topped their group before losing to Russia in the quarter finals two years ago in Warsaw, can go into Amsterdam action full of confidence.

After facing England, the Scottish women will take on Switzerland and Italy.

The group winners will go into the quarter finals where they face the winners of Group 3, which sees Netherlans as the seeds.

In the men’s Thomas Cup qualifier Kieran Merrilees, Calum Menzies and Gordon Hoggan will tackles the singles while Martin Campbell, Angus Gilmour, Jamie Neill, Keith Turnbull and Paul van Rietvelde are the doubles players in the squad.

Hoggan and Gilmour will be making their international debuts in Amsterdam.

Scotland’s men start against Sweden but the face defending champions and top seeds Denmark.