Olympics table tennis: Paul Drinkhall out of singles

Great Britain's interest in the table tennis singles ended with Paul Drinkhall's 4-0 third-round defeat by Germany's Dimitrij Ovtcharov.

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"I knew it was always going to be difficult because he has a very challenging style, a great serve and uses top-spin shots very effectively

Paul Drinkhall

Drinkhall, the world number 107, caused an upset on Sunday by beating Singapore's Zi Yang but eighth seed Ovtcharov proved too consistent.

The 22-year-old went down 11-8 11-5 11-9 11-4 in 25 minutes.

Later on in the fourth round, Ovtcharov cruised to another 4-0 win against Austrian 40-year-old Chen Weixing.

The German will face Michael Maze in the quarter-finals, after the Dane beat Japan's third seed Jun Mizutani, but fellow German Timo Boll crashed out.

Elsewhere, world number one Zhang Jike will take on Hong Kong's Jiang Tianyi in the last eight after coming from behind to beat Belarussian Vladimir Samsonov.

While China's second seed Wang Hao progressed comfortably with a 4-1 victory over Singapore's Gao Ning.

In the women's fourth round, China's top seeds Ning Ding and Li Xiaoxia look on course to reach an eventual gold medal showdown as they both progressed to the last eight.

Drinkhall, who has won three European youth titles, said his victory over Yang - a man ranked 53 places above him - was "the best match of my life", but Ovtcharov was a step up in class.

But the home player, whose girlfriend Joanna Parker lost in round two, will be encouraged by the fact that, at times, he matched Ovtcharov, a silver medallist in the team event in 2008.

The Middlesbrough player showed grit in pulling Ovtcharov back from 10-4 ahead in the first game only to lose 11-8. He then started well in the second before a mid-game loss of concentration cost him dearly.

Drinkhall led 9-8 in the third before Ovtcharov rallied and the German coasted through the fourth, wrapping it up in five minutes.

GB will be in the men's and women's team events, which start on Friday.