GREEN & GOLD
Australia's homegrown talents right now are our juniors no longer. They've been visibly growing in stature each time we've seen them on the international stage. Daniel Guda of NSW who became Oceania men's singles champion this year continues to impress. Victoria's Sawan Serasinghe whose talent was evident at the 2013 Sydney Youth Olympic Festival took out last October's Sydney International tournament in mixed doubles in a field containing Japanese and Indonesian opponents. Doubles star Gronya Somerville has entered this year's Australian Open with mixed doubles with the same partner she rose through junior ranks, Matthew Chau, and in women's doubles is trying out combining with the the other half of the Sydney International mixed champions, Setyana Mapasa.
POSITIVE PEER PRESSURE
With the Australian Open as of its SuperSeries debut surging to becoming the second richest tournament in the world and its reputation growing as evidenced in this its second year attracting density of entries from the top 10 in every badminton discipline, what does that mean for the Australians competing? In practical terms, Aussies are jostling for fewer spots to be able to qualify for the main draw and getting onto the qualification day roster itself remains uncertain until the draw is known on May 5. As far as inspiration goes, the timing has never been better. Being in the company and surrounded by those of a higher level will raise our players aspirations as well as their extract unknown greater qualities within themselves. No doubt Daniel Guda would agree.