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European Championships - 2 Nov 2016

England beat Greece after reversing a 0-2 scoreline



England again showed they are a team which fights to the very end as they beat Greece after reversing a 0-2 scoreline. The line-up of Liam PITCHFORD, Paul DRINKHALL and Sam WALKER famously snatched victory from difficult positions in winning World Team Championships bronze medals this year, and again while wearing GB colours at the Rio Olympics.

 

It was no different against Greece, who led 2-0 when Konstantinos PAPAGEORGIOU beat PITCHFORD 3-2 (11-13, 10-12, 11-3, 11-5, 13-11) and Panagiotis GIONIS defeated DRINKHALL in three close sets (11-9, 12-10, 13-11). When Ioannis SGOUROPOULOS led the deciding set 10-8 against WALKER, England were facing defeat. But WALKER took the next four points to seal a 3-2 (7-11, 10-12, 11-6, 11-6, 12-10) win and keep the host country alive.

 

PITCHFORD showed all his skills to beat GIONIS 3-1 (6-11, 13-11, 13-11, 13-11) but still the match was not over as PAPAGEORGIOU led DRINKHALL 2-1. But the top-ranked England player turned his match around -2 (11-9, 5-11, 9-11, 11-9, 11-5) and gave England the overall victory they craved in front of their home crowd.

 

The match was also shown live on the Facebook page of TheSPORTbible, and more than two million unique viewers watched the action.

 

PITCHFORD said: “That’s what we’re all about - fighting, supporting and never giving in. We’ve had a few close games now and won them all.

 

“It was a team performance, we played for each other and fought for each other.

 

“It’s not the best we’ve played, but we won and that’s the main thing.”

 

GIONIS said: “It was a great game for both teams and the spectators.

 

“All the games were very close. It was in small details and England were happy in the end. It will be very exciting when we play in Greece and we will see.”

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