Badminton ace Nadeem Dalvi has credited the Sir John Hanson Young Talent Scholarship as instrumental in helping secure his first international senior title. 

The 19-year-old, who trains at Sankey Academy Badminton Club, clinched gold over Georges Julien Paul of Mauritius at the 2023 South Africa International in Cape Town, just weeks after being named a recipient of Commonwealth Games England's Hanson Scholarship. 

Add that to a silver medal at the Spanish International and Dalvi revealed that his success has been possible due to the support of his new award. 

"It's been a really up-and-down rollercoaster year for me," he said. 

"I've done really well come the end of the year and every tournament I think I've gotten stronger and learnt from my experiences and mistakes. 

"There's two standouts of the year, one is getting my inaugural international senior title in South Africa. That will stay with me forever. 

"And it would not have been possible without the Hanson Scholarship and the support I receive from Team England, I would not have been able to even go to that competition and win. 

"The other was my first call-up to the senior national team for the World Team Championships [Surdiman Cup Finals] in China. 

"I ended up playing the world number 12 in front of 8,000 people in an arena which was a very different experience. 

"I'm used to playing in front of smaller crowds so it was crazy, the noise and the cameras were a great test for me learning how to create a competition bubble on the court." 

Dalvi took up badminton at age seven after tagging along to his dad's local league matches on a weekend. 

With top-notch hand-eye coordination, the youngster quickly progressed on the court and developed a competitive edge that led him onto the Badminton England Pathway Programme. 

"My dad used to play in the local Bedfordshire league and took me along to watch," he said. 

"At the end of those matches, we'd have a hit with each other, and he told me that I had a pretty natural hand-eye coordination. 

"So he enrolled me into my first club aged seven and since then I've just progressed until age 15 I got my first call up to the junior national squad. 

"So it was quite a casual way of me getting into it." 

With a senior international title now under his belt, Dalvi revealed that his career highlight is still his first under-19 English national title, clinching victory in dominant form in Milton Keynes. 

The teenager now dreams of one day representing Team England on the Commonwealth stage and reflected back on the part of the sport which made him fall in love with it in the first place. 

"There's all of these little aspects that you need to have in badminton," he added. 

"You need everything, to be quick, agile, powerful and good reaction time. 

"It's like a game of chess because you need to have them all, and there are so many different routes and angles to give you success in a certain match. 

"I just love the complexity of the sport."

Dalvi was one of five young athletes chosen to recieve the Sir John Hanson Scholarship, a programme designed to support the next generation of English talent as they embark on a challenging journey and assisting them in fulfilling their potential on the international stage. 

And with his dad the one now tagging along to his tournaments, the scholarship has been key in helping Dalvi go full circle in his badminton journey. 

"It's helped me get to a lot more tournaments and get a lot more training to build my craft," he said. 

"It's going to be huge for me to help achieve my goals. 

"I have a big family and when I put that I'd been awarded it into the group chat they were so happy for me. 

"My dad came out to South Africa and China with me and he's the one that watches me now. 

"He always says that he's living his dream through me as he would have loved to have played at such a high level. 

"I love that I can give him that and so happy for him and myself."