AN inspirational Glenrothes sporting star who recently became Britain’s wheelchair badminton champion now has her sights set on further gold reports, NEIL HENDERSON.
Kirsty Jones (38) who lost the use of her legs following an illness in 2004 vowed to continue enjoying sports, eventually taking up badminton and joining the Lothian Disability Badminton Club in 2006 where she excelled.
Now the British Champion, after winning gold and silver medals in the Scottish and English legs of the Four Nations Parabadminton Championships earlier this year, Kirsty is set to conquer the continent this summer.
And now she is aiming to become the European number one by securing the top prize in the European Championships taking place in Dortmund, Germany this weekend.
Kirsty’s work colleagues at the Sky customer services centre in Dunfermline are even fundraising to help cover the cost of the trip.
She told the Gazette: “In March I won one gold and two silver medals in the Scottish leg of the Four Nations Parabadminton Championships, and in May I won one gold and two silver, which made me British champion.
“When I’m on the badminton court, a lot of it is about turning a ‘can’t’ into ‘can’ and I’m hopeful I can do just that to win gold in Germany.”
The tough competition will see the best competitors from 14 European nations competing for the coverted title.
Aside from the rigorous training schedule, Kirsty also finds inspiration in coaching youngsters who have learning difficulties or physical disabilities.
She added: “I love coaching younger athletes, it really saved me after my diagnosis.
“Just seeing them running about balancing a shuttlecock on a racket with a smile on their face really makes my day.”