Badminton: Kirsty Gilmour relishes Rio place & returns to world's top 20

Kirsty Gilmour
Gilmour became the first Scot to win a European Championship medal last Sunday

Scot Kirsty Gilmour is relishing the prospect of the Rio Olympics after a European Championship silver medal moved her back into the world's top 20.

The 22-year-old from Glasgow finished the year-long Olympic qualifying race as Britain's highest-ranked women's singles player.

Her European medal saw her rise four places to 17 in the world, close to her previous best of 16 in September 2014.

She is now the second highest-ranked European player behind Carolina Marin.

The Spaniard, twice European and double world champion, beat Gilmour 21-12, 21-18 in the European Championships final on Sunday.

But Gilmour has become the 13th Olympic qualifier in women's singles, giving her high hopes of securing one of the last seeded places at the Games. That will depend on the final number of players in the women's singles draw.

She will follow in the footsteps of British women's singles players Anne Gibson in Atlanta 1996 and Susan Egelstaff in London 2012, when Egelstaff and doubles star Imogen Bankier formed half the GB squad along with Chris Adcock and men's singles player Rajiv Ouseph.

"It's been a long year and in some ways a short year - at times it's whizzed by," said Commonwealth Games silver medallist Gilmour.

"I will be going to Rio and following in big footsteps after Anne Gibson, Susan Egelstaff and Imogen Bankier."

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