15 Apr 2018

Runners up four years ago in Glasgow when beaten in the final by colleagues, the husband and wife team of Paul and Jo Drinkhall, for England’s Liam Pitchford and Tin-Tin Ho, on the morning of Sunday 15th April in the Oxenford Studios, at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games it was the same outcome,

The no.4 seeds, they were beaten in the final by Singapore’s Gao Ning and Yu Mengyu, the top seeds (12-10, 12-10, 11-9).

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager

Defeat for the English duo but they had their chances, as opposed to being two games to nil in arrears, they could have been two games to nil ahead.

In the opening game they led 10-9, in the second 10-8; the score-line was closer than a straight games margin suggested.

“It’s the first time I’ve ever won gold in the Mixed Doubles at a Commonwealth Games; my thanks to all the spectators who came and supported. Both teams in the final were very competitive; both gave their best; when we were down we just had to stay focused and try hard.” Yu Mengyu

The win for Gao Ning and Yu Mengyu followed success for Sathiyan Gnanasekaran and Manika Batra in an all Indian bronze medal contest, the no.2 seeds they accounted for Sharath Kamal Achanta and Mouma Das, the no.3 seeds (11-6, 11-2.11-4).

“It’s the most difficult match, you play your colleagues, one pair goes away with nothing, fine if it’s for the gold medal, both pairs get something.” Sathiyan Gnanasekaran

Moreover the faced their respective Men’s Doubles and Women’s Doubles partners with whom earlier in the proceeding they had won silver medals; Sathiyan Gnanasekaran had partnered Sharath Kamal Achanta, Manika Batra had joined forces with Mouma Das.

The match was very much a non-event and begs the question as to whether there should be two bronze medals; the argument is that you should win the bronze not gain the medal through defeat.

“Definitely there should be two bronze medals; I don’t agree that you’ve to win a match to win the bronze medal. You have won enough matches to get to the semi-final; you have worked hard through several rounds, other sports have two bronze medals so why not table tennis?” Sathiyan Gnanasekaran

It is the combat sports that have two bronze medals but is table tennis not like boxing or similar? It is battle between two teams or two players?

2018 Commonwealth Games Yu Mengyu Gao Ning

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Day 11 - 2018 Commonwealth Games