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Publish date: November 16, 2012
England’s number 1 Paul Drinkhall will return to 2013 Joola European Championship Qualifying action after his place was confirmed in the side to play against Netherlands in Portsmouth.
International table tennis, returning to the South Coast, will be blessed with the presence of the four-times National Champion after his unfortunate absence from the England side that played Romania in Hull last month.
Drinkhall, 22, will be joining fellow Olympian Liam Pitchford at the Mountbatten Leisure Centre, Alexandra Park on Tuesday 20th November, as well as National Doubles Champion Daniel Reed, who is fresh from a career-best international win at the recent 2012 European Championships.
Reed (WR 229) beat Germany’s Patrick Franziska (87) 3-2 in Herning, Denmark last week while 19-year-old Pitchford (137), infamous for his 2011 European Championships wins over Vladimir Samsonov (9) and Alexey Smirnov (20), added to his ‘big scalps’ with victory against Austria’s Robert Gardos (32).
The fixture against the Dutch should provide the English players with a perfect opportunity to reinvigorate their qualifying campaign with none of the visiting players currently ranked inside the world’s top 300.
It is the men’s last home fixture in their 2013 Qualification campaign as they face difficult-looking away trips to Bulgaria and the Czech Republic in early 2013 to potentially pick up one of the top two positions in Challenge Group A.
With promotion to the Championship Division still on the players’ minds, a win against Netherlands on Tuesday 20th November would set up an exciting 12 months ahead.
Teams to play at Mountbatten Leisure Centre, Alexandra Park, Portsmouth PO2 9QA (Tues 20th November 2012, 19:00)
Coach: Jia Yi Liu
Congratulations to Helen Moore who won our Twitter competition for two free VIP tickets to the match! If you entered the competition and didn’t win don’t forget to buy yours for just £7 (adults) £4 (children & concessions).
Tickets are still on sale for this international match and can be brought on the door at the Mountbatten Leisure Centre or over the phone*: 02392 626509 *Please phone and pre-order to avoid disappointment!