Brighton trio add world medals to their CV

Harry Fairchild produced an amazing comeback, saving SEVEN match points to secure a singles medal as Brighton athletes brought back three bronzes from the World Championships for Athletes with Down’s Syndrome.

Harry Fairchild, Andrew Tonkin and Chris O’Flinn competed against players from nations as far apart as South Africa and Argentina at the tournament in Madeira.

In the singles, Fairchild had a brilliant victory in the quarter-finals against the No 2 seed from France. It was a see-saw match, with Fairchild going 2-0 up but seeing his opponent battle back to level and lead 10-3 in the decider.

But an amazing run of nine points by Harry settled the match in his favour – you can watch the comeback below.

It put him into the semi-finals, where he was beaten by a strong Argentinian opponent.

The GB team began with a 3-2 win over Portugal, coming from 2-1 down as Tonkin sealed the victory with a superb 3-2 win over Ferreira Goncalo.

Earlier, Fairchild, who is currently ranked No 10 in the world, beat Goncalo and also Joao Soldado Goncalves, the world No 1.

Fairchild picked up two more wins against players ranked above him in the next group match but could not prevent a 3-2 defeat to Italy.

In the semi-finals, the British trio were beaten 3-1 by France, but nevertheless had the consolation of being on the podium to receive bronze medals.

Andrew Tonkin picked up a key victory in the team event (picture by Alexis Maryon)

In the men’s doubles, Fairchild partnered Goncalves and, having received a bye through the first round, they overcame South Africa’s Pieter Starke & Moegamat Christians in the quarter-finals.

Their semi-final opponents were Cedric Courrillaud & Ludovic Morainville, the world No 2 and No 3, who won the match to reach the final, leaving Fairchild & Goncalves with bronze.

Tonkin & O’Flinn, ranked 28 and 29 in the world, won their first doubles match 3-1 (11-5, 11-7, 9-11, 11-5) against Joao Miguel Goncalves & Pedro Azevdeo of Portugal to get through to the quarter-finals.

They were up against French pair Jean Bachevillier & Alexandre Sol, ranked No 4 and No 5 in the world, who won the match and went on to win the gold.

The team on the podium (picture by Alexis Maryon)
Author: via Table Tennis England
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