Cape Town - Africa’s second best player, Jacob Maliekal, is the 2015 Uganda International Badminton Championship champion.
The South African was in good form when he defeated Egypt’s Ali Ahmed El Khateeb 11-8, 12-10, 11-2 in the final played at the MTN Arena, Lugogo on Sunday.
Maliekal who also won gold at the last All Africa Games defeated the tournament’s top seed and the world’s 97th seeded player, Milan Ludik in the semi final 9-11, 11-7, 11-6, 11-9. El Khateeb saw off another South African player Prakash Vijayanath 8-11, 11-9, 11-9, 11-7.
“This is a great win for me because I lost in the finals last year. I will keep working hard as am targeting playing at the 2016 Olympics in Brazil,” Maliekal said after the game.
In the women’s singles Turkey’s Ebru Yazgan stopped Negin Amiripour from Iran 11-9, 8-11, 11-8, 11-7. Uganda’s top men’s player who lost out in the first round of the men’s singles later paired with Ludik and lost in the men’s doubles to the pair of Pavel Florian and Ondrej Kopriva from the Czech Republic. They lost 11-7, 5-11, 15-13, 6-11, 8-11.
The players from India dominated the women’s doubles and mixed doubles events. Sikki Reddy and Poorvisha Ram defeated the Iranian pair of Negin Amiripour and Aghael Hajiagha Soraya 11-7, 6-11, 8-11, 11-7, 11-3.
Reddy again paired with Kona Tarun to beat the pair of Muhammed Ali Kurt and Kader Inal (Turkey) 11-8, 11-10, 11-6 in the mixed doubles final.
Oscar Kamboona, the Chairman Uganda Badminton Association (UBA) thanked all the foreign players for attending the the Championship.
The event sanctioned by the Badminton World Federation (BWF) attracted players from Czech Republic, India, Egypt, Slovakia, Turkey, Hungary, Nigeria, Slovenia, Algeria, Seychelles, South Africa, Bulgaria, Kenya, Mauritius, Zambia, Iran and hosts Uganda.