Our International 20×20 Women in Sport Award this week goes to Chloe McGee and her brother Sam who in January will be off travelling the world again in pursuit of a place at the Tokyo Olympics.
Last weekend their contribution to the sport of badminton in Ireland was deservedly recognised at the annual Badminton Ireland Awards in Dublin where they received the award for Players of the Year. And what a year it was as they traveled far and wide to win vital points in their quest for Olympic qualification. During the year they were in Germany, Spain, Singapore, Malaysia, Ukraine, Russia, Japan, China, Korea, Holland, Switzerland, Thailand and England. And it is back on the road again in January in that search for points. Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia are their first stops in 2020.
The competition is fierce with only 16 spots available worldwide for the Mixed Doubles. Currently they are third reserve for Europe so more points, and huge dedication, are needed. Chloe is of course a already a triple Olympian having competed in the Games in Beijing, London and Rio. At the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, she became the first ever Irish woman to win a badminton match at the Olympics.
The pair have represented Ireland for a number of years with great distinction – including a bronze medal in the inaugural European Games in 2015.