Nottingham’s sheer belief in budding new partnership
MATTHEW Nottingham insists that, thanks to new doubles partner Harley Towler, 2015 is the year he breaks into the top two pairings in the country.
The 22-year-old from Macclesfield (right) switched partners in September as the British team gears up for another Olympic cycle in the build-up to Rio.
Alongside Towler, the former Wilmslow High School student is hoping to fight his way into contention for one of the coveted spots on the plane for Rio, and they began their campaign with victory in the YONEX Welsh International in November.
And despite losing out in the final at the English National Championships in Crawley last weekend, Nottingham is adamant that with the chemistry they share the pairing can go all the way.
“Last season was one where I progressed a lot,” he said. “We’re definitely going in the right direc- tion. We’ve got to two semis and won a tournament so we’re doing well.
“We are doing extras before and after each session every day; extra physicals and video analysis.
“We’re always together and talking about how we’re playing, so we are making acceleration towards being on the same wavelengths quicker.
“Harley shares my ‘hard work’ attitude and on the court he is always wanting to win and doing his best.
“Usually it takes people in partnerships time to get used to each other and see how each other play, but we’re doing everything we can to make sure that is as little time as possible.”
Nottingham and Towler went down to the number one seeds, the experienced Chris Langridge and Marcus Ellis at the Nationals in a thrilling three-set final. And despite missing out on that occasion, Nottingham believes they’re rapidly closing the gap on those above them.
He added: “Getting to the final at the Nationals was a big step forwards and it was where we probably played the best badminton that we’ve played.
“It was a tight game but they have a bit more experience in that pair and Harley and I are definitely pushing them now.
“We really believe that in the next six months we can be up at their level comfortably.
“We want to be going to European Championships and other big tournaments like that so we can get used to the feeling – all that experience counts.”