Bronze for England in World Team Championship

Japan's Jun Mizutani celebrates after beating England's Liam Pitchford Credit: ITTF

England had to settle for a bronze medal after losing to Japan at the World Team Table Tennis Championships in Kuala Lumpur.

World number seven ranked Jun Mizutani proved to be England's tormentor in chief, defeating both Paul Drinkhall and Liam Pitchford to give Japan a 3-1 win in the Semi Final.

In the first match Mizutani beat Drinkhall, from Loftus, 3-0 (11-8, 11-9, 11-4) to give Japan the advantage. Maharu Yoshimura then beat Pitchford 3-2 (11-5, 12-14, 11-7, 10-12, 11-9) to make it 2-0.

England were then given a lifeline when Sam Walker produced a brilliant performance against Yuya Oshima. Walker, ranked 159th in the world, shocked the world No 20 with a 3-1 (11-6, 11-6, 8-11, 11-9) win to make it 2-1 overall.

But with Pitchford leading 2-0 against Mizutani in game four, the Japanese rescued four match points and produced a stunning comeback to win 3-2 (8-11, 11-13, 11-8, 12-10, 11-6) and set up a Final showdown with China.

However, England still take home a bronze medal after reaching the Semi Final's of the tournament for the first time since 1983.