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Tennis: Frenchmen suffer unexpected defeat in men's singles
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08:31, August 20, 2008

Two French players suffered unexpected defeat to lower-ranked opponents in the Olympic men's table tennis singles competition Tuesday.

Christophe Legout, ranked 52nd, lost to 223rd-ranked Doan Kien Quoc of Vietnam 4-2 in the men's singles first round, while 39-year-old Patrick Chila, who won a doubles bronze at the Sydney Games, blew a 3-0 lead, losing to a 96th-ranked Hungarian Janos Jakab.

A disappointed Chila announced his retirement afterwards, saying "this was my last international table tennis game, though it wasn't the best way to finish."

Chila has been a regular member of the French national team for 20 years and played his first world championships in 1989.

The other Frenchman, Damien Eloi, reached the second round, by beating an Egyptian opponent 4-3.

Sweden's second best Jens Lundqvist also suffered a 4-2 upset when the 58th-ranked player lost to Australia's William Henzell, who trained in Europe for years and is ranked 145th.

David Zhuang, the only U.S. player in the men's singles, was knocked out by Nigeria's Segun Toriola 4-3.

On the women's side, only one European-born player reached the third round of the singles competition on Tuesday, remaining on track to challenge the top 16 Asians.

Viktoria Pavlovich of Belarus, ranked 34th in the world, had little difficulty in demolishing 61st-ranked Elizabeta Samara of Romania 4-1 in the second round.

Three former Chinese, Dang Ye-seo of South Korea, Li Jie of the Netherlands and Hu Melek of Turkey, also advanced to the third round.

Participants in the singles event include 78 men and 77 women. The top 16 women, all of whom are Asians, will not take to the tables until the third round begins on Wednesday.

Among the 16, 12 are Chinese by birth, with the other four being Japanese and South Koreans.


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1 China 43 14 19 76
2 USA 26 26 27 79
3 Great Britain 16 9 8 33
4 Australia 11 12 12 35
5 Germany 11 8 9 28
6 Russia 10 14 18 42
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