England ‘moving in the right direction’ despite ITTF Team World Cup KO, says Chesterfield’s Liam Pitchford

Tokyo, Team's World Cup Men's Teams - Quarterfinals , ZEN-NOH 2019 ITTF Team World Cup, Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium, Tokyo 2019/11/08.
Tokyo, Team's World Cup Men's Teams - Quarterfinals , ZEN-NOH 2019 ITTF Team World Cup, Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium, Tokyo 2019/11/08.

Liam Pitchford admitted England were beaten by a better team on the day as they were knocked out of the ZEN-NOH ITTF Team World Cup in the quarter-finals by Chinese Taipei.

England, ranked ninth of the 12 nations in the event, got through having beaten No 2 seeds Japan and topped their group, but found the No 7 seeds too strong as they were defeated 3-0.

Paul Drinkhall & Tom Jarvis were beaten 3-0 (11-9, 11-8, 11-2) by Liao Cheng-Ting & Chen Chien-An in the opening doubles in Tokyo and Liam Pitchford could not get England back in it against world No 10 Lin Yun-Ju, losing 3-0 (11-9, 11-6, 13-11).

Drinkhall’s 3-0 (11-6, 11-8, 11-9) defeat by Chen Chien-An sealed the match for Chinese Taipei and a place in the semi-finals against South Korea.

Pitchford now turns his attention to next week’s Austrian Open, while England will next be in action as a team at the Olympic team qualifiers in Portugal in January.

He said: “We were beaten by a better team today but overall it’s been a very positive tournament for us and I feel we’re moving in the right direction for where we want to be at the Olympic qualifiers in January.”