Patrick Machugh on winning the Iceland title.

Scotland badminton ace and Strathclyde student Patrick Machugh has made an excellent start to what could be a defining year in his professional career. The 21 year old has already won his first European title of 2014 in Reykjavik, as he took home the Iceland championships title with his doubles partner Martin Campbell. Such good form early in the season is vital in a Commonwealth year, and Machugh came close to adding a second title after narrowly losing in the final of the Yonex Scottish Championships shortly after his return.

After tasting defeat in the final in Iceland last year Machugh described the experience of victory this time around.

“In the first round we had to overcome Irish pair who were quite tricky but we played our game and got through to play a relatively comfortable win against a Danish double. The semi-finals were hard and we were run close by two Indonesian’s but we managed to make the final against the Belgian team who were top seeds. We won the first set, lost the second, and then managed to pull off a win in the third to seal the tournament! The win was made better by the fact that we had come so close and lost the previous year”

In what is only his second year of senior competition Machugh shows no signs of struggling at this level. He discusses his upcoming schedule which will see him play tournaments in Portugal, Romania, Poland and then France all in succession, the aim will be to put in performances which will see him and his partner included in the top 60 in the world which will be a massive factor in his selection for the Commonwealth Games.

“Obviously everyone wants to compete at the Commonwealth games and I’m no different, we currently sit around 66th in the world and I’m sure we can improve on that. I’ve got a lot of European tournaments coming up so I’ve got the chance to make an impression”

After winning his first senior title in Bulgaria last year Machugh looks set to continue to win titles. Sustaining him at this level is his training regime of 6 days a week for around 25 hours and the work he’s putting in is delivering results. Machugh has been selected for an elite team GB training programme in Milton Keynes which he attends with other top-level players from around the UK for special development sessions and is also sponsored by Babolat.

The next weeks and months will prove decisive for Patrick’s commonwealth ambition and he will know that he has both the ability and dedication to represent Scotland when July finally comes.

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