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Gerry Graham photo

Gerry Graham photo

Nick Hill, left, and Nick Chong have qualified to compete provincially in badminton.

Driving for success

St. Mary high school badminton players Nick Hill and Nick Chong have qualified for the OFSAA championship tournament May 1-3 in Markham. Hill and Chong, who have been neighbours and friends for the past 16 years, became a doubles pairing for the first time this year. Previously a singles player, the six-foot Hill has been getting in extra practice with Chong for the past few months at McMaster University.

“You don’t need as much cardio (for doubles),” Hill said. “I like that. It’s easier to work with someone than just relying on yourself the whole time.”

While Hill and Chong came in as the top-ranked doubles team from Hamilton-Wentworth, another St. Mary entry – the No. 2 pairing of Patrick Chong and Brad Grightmire – also took part in the GHAC qualifier.

“My son (Patrick) suffered a back injury at the city championships and he couldn’t move fast enough today,” said St. Mary’s coach Ming Chong. “That being said, he gave it his best shot. We’re pleased, though, to be able to send a team from St. Mary to OFSAA.”

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