Liam Pitchford

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Liam Pitchford
Nationality  Great Britain
Born (1993-07-12) 12 July 1993 (age 23)
Chesterfield, England
Playing style Shakehand, Offensive
Equipment(s) Butterfly
Highest ranking 43 (November 2014)
Current ranking 48 (August 2016)
Height 1.82 m (6 ft 0 in)
Weight 58 kg (9.1 st; 128 lb)

Liam Pitchford (born 12 July 1993) is a British Table tennis player. As of August 2016, he is ranked the no. 48 player in the world.

Career[edit]

Pitchford began playing table tennis when he was 8 years old. He won the British Home Countries Championship in 2009, and two Commonwealth Games medals in 2010 (Silver in Team and Bronze in Doubles).[1]

In the summer of 2011, he transferred to German club TTF Liebherr Ochsenhausen in the top division, the Bundesliga, having played for second division club FC Tegernheim the previous season. From 2009 to 2010 Pitchford played for Aarhus BTK in the best Danish league. In July 2014, his contract with Ochsenhausen was extended by three years.[2]

In the autumn of 2011, he beat World number nine Vladimir Samsonov[3] and World junior number three Wu Jiaji in international competitions, paving his route to becoming number one in the English rankings in November 2011. He finished the year with a career-high World ranking of 171 to become the third highest-ranked British player on the ITTF World Ranking list, and was subsequently part of the Team GB squad for the London Olympics in 2012.[4]

Pitchford has won national singles titles at U14, Cadet, U21 and Senior levels, and doubles titles at U14, Cadet, Junior and Senior levels.[5] He is the reigning men's singles national champion (March 2015).[6]

In 2014 he was part of the England men's team which clinched promotion to the top level of world table tennis at the World Team Championships in Japan.[7]

Pitchford represented England at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, winning a silver medal in the team competition as Singapore took gold in a repeat of the 2010 result. He also won a silver medal alongside Tin-Tin Ho in the mixed doubles, and won the bronze medal in the men's singles.[8] In August 2014 he reached a career high of No 44 in the ITTF world rankings.[9]

At the 2015 World Table Tennis Championships, Pitchford showed growth by reaching the round of 32 in men's singles.[10] He beat two-time World Cup runner-up Kalinikos Kreanga and world number 20 Tiago Apolonia before losing to South Korean Joo Sae-hyuk.[11]

In June 2015, Pitchford was part of the Great Britain table tennis squad at the inaugural European Games in Baku, where he reached the quarter-finals.[12]

In March 2016, Pitchford was part of the England team, alongside Paul Drinkhall and Sam Walker, which won bronze medals at the World Team Championships in Malaysia, England's first medal at that level since 1983 and the first time a newly promoted team had earned a podium place at the event.[13]

Pitchford competed for Team GB in the singles and team events at the Rio 2016 Olympics. He reached the last 32 in the singles [14]and, alongside Paul Drinkhall and Sam Walker, beat France [15] to reach the quarter-finals of the team event, where GB were beaten by China.[16]

References[edit]