Leona, congratulations on your achievements so far. When did you get into Badminton?
I first got into badminton when my dad coached his first student, his student started to win lots of medals, so my dad encouraged me to start. I held my first racket at the age of 7.
How often do you practice?
I practice most days apart from Friday, it is my relaxed day. I train a minimum of 13 hours a week and normally in the North Herts Leisure centre
How do you juggle school work and training?
I normally put aside a few days a week to do my schoolwork, normally on a Friday and occasionally the weekends when I don't have tournaments.
Do you compete every weekend?
Not every weekend but most! Competing in All England tournament normally involves a lot of travelling across the country and of course international tournaments are played overseas.
What do you enjoy the most – singles or doubles?
I enjoy both singles and doubles, but if I had to choose either one, it would have to be singles, because it is more challenging, a lot of skills and stamina involved and you have to rely on yourself not anyone else.
What is your current ranking?
In my current age group, u14 Badminton England, I am ranked no2 in singles and no1 for girls doubles and mixed doubles. Badminton England Women's ranking I am 78 in singles, 131 in doubles, 129 in mixed doubles across England. I am also ranked no2 in all age group across Hertfordshire.
Where do you see yourself in five years time?
In five years time, I will continue playing badminton, train hard and hope to compete in the 2024 Olympics in Paris, France and hopefully qualify to play and if I succeed, then my goal is to win and come home with a medal and do my family and myself proud.
We support Leona through our Be The Best Grant programme. This scheme awards up to £500 to develop the skills and talents of individuals, or groups who live in Letchworth Garden City. For more information visit letchworth.com/