Oliver smashes the world rankings to take top spot

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Borders disability sports officer Alan Oliver has ended the season as world number one in para-badminton’s men’s SL3 sport class.

Oliver, who joined Borders Sport and Leisure in May 2012, is the reigning SL3 European champion and recently took home the men’s singles title from the Spanish International para-badminton championships. Both results have elevated his position from number two and overtake Germany’s Tim Haller to claim top spot.

Tweedbank resident Oliver, originally from Alloa, said: “Ending the season as world number one is an incredible achievement and I would like to thank my parents, coaches and friends who have not only supported me this year, but got me to this point in my career. Winning the European Championships is definitely a highlight for me after coming through so many tense matches, but claiming my second Spanish international title at the end of the season probably gave my ranking the boost it needed to overtake Tim and stay ahead of some strong Asian players.”

Alan has also bridged into Scotland’s mainstream tournaments competing in the 2013 Yonex Scottish National Championships alongside doubles partner Colin Leslie, which has helped to bring more awareness to disability badminton and also provide valuable match practice going into his main events.

Oliver, who has cerebal palsy, now looks forward to the 2013/14 season starting with the World Para-badminton Championships in November.