BINLEY’s Fontaine Chapman admits winning the AJ Bell National Badminton League on home soil is the perfect way to end a phenomenal season for the Birmingham Lions.
Although the 26-year-old failed to beat Loughborough Sport’s Chloe Birch in her final fixture after losing 8-9 4-9 7-9, Birmingham Lions wrapped up a 3-1 victory in fashionable style, winning two tie-breaks along the way.
Their triumph over favourites Loughborough Sport at Birmingham’s Barclaycard Arena capped off a tremendous season for Chapman’s team, with their singles players having won eight of their ten games this season.
“It feels amazing to have won because not making the playoffs last year was tough for us to take,” said Chapman.
“To be here in Birmingham and to have won means so much to us as a team because we are so well-bonded that we want nothing but the best for each other.
“I love playing in this area so it is really good to be back playing here. The crowd were fantastic and really got involved too which is nice.
“I now live in Birmingham so it is really nice to be here and my family and friends were able to come along and watch.
“I was gutted after I lost to Chloe – I just wanted to win so badly that I got too tense and nervous.
“I knew that she was going to come out fighting against me because she’s a tough competitor, and she was definitely out for blood.
“It was good for me though in that it teaches me that I need to hold my nerve a bit better and it’s a great learning experience for me.”
After the deserved celebrations that Sunday’s final will have no doubt concluded in, Chapman will soon turn her attentions to the Spanish International.
And after glory in the NBL this season, Chapman admits she is craving more success on a personal level.
“I’ve had a few niggles this season which has meant I haven’t had the training blocks I would have liked to, so I want to get my head down and get training.
“Hopefully next season I can try and win a few titles as well as keep my national title which is a big goal of mine.
“It’s also an aim to get into the top 40 in the world, so hopefully this time next season I will be there.”
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