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Badminton ace Henry now 217th in the world

Published:Sunday | December 28, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Gareth Henry - File

Shayne Fairman, Sunday Gleaner Writer

Caribbean men's singles and doubles badminton champion Gareth Henry has shot up the world rankings with a season-topping 217 on the latest Badminton World Federation (BWF) men's list, which was updated on Friday.

Having played seven global tournaments in the recently concluded season, badminton's local poster boy achieved a further 6,970 Olympic Games qualification points.

The points will go towards his qualifying for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

"My dream is to be an Olympian and be in the top 50 in the world," he told The Sunday Gleaner.

Only the sport's top 100 players will book their passage to the 2016 Games. Henry is hoping to go all out over the nest year to make it to the Olympics.

Less than four years ago he was ranked 116 globally but missed out on qualifying for the 2012 Games held in London.

This time, he will have to put in even more hard work, consistency, and all-round disciplined performances if he is to achieve his goal.

While he has made steady progress in the recently concluded season, where he started at 500, Henry knows all too well the demands of the journey ahead and that considerable amount of work is ahead.

"Making the Olympics will come when I am ranked among the top 100 players and have 17,000-plus points. That's where I need to be," he outlined.

"I do believe I am capable of doing it," he added. "I just need to remain focused and determined and get assistance with funding," he said.

"I will have a real crack at the top 50 in the world," Henry continued.

The 23-year-old believes he is yet to hit his top game, though.

"I just have to do more sparring and training to start to play faster and better," adding that he has not peaked as a player yet.

The ace Jamaican is confident his game will improve once he plays consistently with top-quality players.