Ravenshead badminton star Chris Adcock and partner Andy Ellis, who took third place two years ago, had to settle for another men’s doubles bronze at the Intersport European Championships in Kazan.
Second seeds Adcock and Ellis went into their men’s doubles semi-final in Russia full of optimism, but after controlling the first two thirds of the opening game against Mads Pieler Kolding and Mads Conrad-Petersen, the Danes turned the tables to take it 21-16.
Adcock and Ellis responded to the challenge by taking a tight second game 21-19 with a strong surge from 15-15.
But in the decider the England pair were always behind and the fourth seeds rocked them with a nine-point burst to move them from 6-5 to 15-5, allowing Adcock and Ellis just three more points before taking the contest 21-8 after exactly one hour.
National coach Pete Jeffrey said: “It was a disappointing result for Chris and Andy. They fought hard to win the second game but couldn’t maintain the quality level in the decider, making too many mistakes.
“This equals their achievements of two years ago but they could have progressed to the final if they had been more consistent.”
Adcock and Ellis had come from behind to defeat Russia’s Nikita Khakimov and Vasily Kuznetsov 19-21 21-17 21-8 in the quarter-finals.
Adcock’s wife Gabby and Lauren Smith also carried England medal hopes and made a bright start in opening up an 8-4 lead in their quarter-final against defending champions Christinna Pedersen and Kamilla Rytter Juhl before the Danish top seeds hit back to book their semi-final place 21-13 21-13.
The Adocks’ exit in the mixed doubles had provided one of the tournament’s biggest shocks as the second seeds fell to Anders Kristiansen and Julie Houmann.
The Adcocks began well enough, racing into an 8-0 lead on the way to taking the first game 21-12. But the Danes hit back to claim the second 21-18 and stunned the English pair in the third game to clinch it 21-12 and repeat last year’s three-game victory over them in the Yonex German Open in their only previous meeting.