The 2021 Uganda International Badminton tournament (16th edition) climaxed on Sunday 28th February at the MTN Indoor Arena – Lugogo.
Seven countries in Kenya, Ghana, Germany, India, Nigeria, United States of America and hosts Uganda participated in the four-day event that started on Thursday garnering close to 90 participants.
Hosts Uganda put in a sublime show in the doubles events (Women and mixed doubles) claiming nine medals but the overall performance in the Men and Women singles was wanting.
Uganda’s pair of Husina Kobugabe and Mable Namakoye triumphed in the Women’s doubles after defeating Fadilah Shamika Rafi and Tracy Naluwooza (2-0) on the finals to brag with gold medals.
Mable, believes the thorough preparations and multiple training sessions held with her partner enabled them win the women’s doubles.
“We have won the doubles but what enabled me us win is that we have been training together with my partner, we have took time to train together and corrected our mistakes that’s why we won. We are going to have a camp for one month and we are going to make our timetable and we start training because we haven’t All Africa Games so we have to make sure we work very hard so that we win a game,” Mable said.
Another Ugandan duo (Brian Kasirye and Husina Kobugabe) overcame Israel Wanagalya and Betty Apio by 2-0 to clinch the mixed doubles event. Uganda won and finished as runners up in the category after an all-Ugandan final.
National Council of sports chairman and newly elected Uganda Olympic Committee president Donald Rukare urged other Federations to emulate how the Uganda Badminton Association has been able to hold such event in the midst of the pandemic.
“I believe they have been able to enjoy, the standard is quite high and we are happy that the Uganda Badminton Federation has been able to observe the COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures. I believe some federations can learn and emulate how others have done it to hold safely these kinds of events which amplify sports,” he noted.
Elsewhere, Varun Kaput (India) beat countrymate Sankar Subramanian 2-1 to win the Men’s Singles while Malvika Bansod (India) beat Anupan Upadhyaya with the same points to win the women’s singles.
The Uganda International Badminton tournament was a point accumulating event for both commonwealth and olympic games and has a bearing on countries’ and players’ rankings.
Uganda Badminton Association’s chairman Annet Nakamya, Chief Executive Officer Simon Mugabi, and several other officials were all in attendance at the closing ceremony.