Liam Pitchford went out at his first hurdle at the WTT Star Contender Goa as he lost a close four-game match to Simon Gauzy of France.

Pitchford played aggressively and had his chances against the world No 32 and it was ultimately small margins in defeat, as it so often is at the top level.

The Englishman won the first game 14-12, having led 10-7 and trailed 10-11, but Gauzy pulled it back in the second game.

The third saw Pitchford pull back from 7-10 to 10-10 but could not make it stick as his opponent took it 12-10.

There was then a 9-6 lead for Pitchford in the fourth, only for Gauzy to reel off five points in a row to book a last-16 tie against second seed Tomokazu Harimoto of Japan.

Meanwhile, there was a major shock at the top end of the draw as world No 1 and top seed Fan Zhendong of China was beaten by qualifier Cho Daeseong of South Korea (WR 190), who came from 2-0 down to win 3-2 (7-11, 6-11, 12-10, 11-9, 11-8).

Pitchford next heads to the Singapore Smash which starts next week and where he will compete alongside England team-mates Paul Drinkhall, Sam Walker, Tom Jarvis and Tin-Tin Ho.


Men’s Singles
Round of 32

Simon Gauzy (FRA) bt Liam Pitchford 3-1 (12-14, 11-6, 12-10, 11-9)