No regrets for Drinkhall after Rio defeat

Paul Drinkhall Credit: USA TODAY Network/SIPA USA/PA Images

North East table tennis star Paul Drinkhall says he has 'no regrets' after being eliminated at the last 16 stage of the Men's singles event at the Olympic Games.

The 26-year-old, from Loftus, became the only the third British player to reach the last 16 stage at the Olympics and the first since Carl Prean in 1992.

Stunning victories against Singapore's Gao Ning (ranked 34th in the world) and Croatia's Andrej Gacina (ranked 19th) propelled Drinkhall into Round Four in Rio.

However, his run ended with a 4-2 (11-9, 11-6, 11-8, 15-17, 7-11, 11-8) defeat to world number 9 Vladimir Samsonov at the last 16 stage despite saving an incredible eight match points during the game.

Drinkhall told Table Tennis England's official website:

Drinkhall will now link up with his GB teammates Liam Pitchford and Sam Walker for the Men's Team event in Rio.

Great Britain will play France in the First Round on August 12.