Britons Andrew Selby, Luke Campbell and Anthony Joshua all won silver medals after being beaten in their finals at the World Amateur Boxing Championships.
Selby and Campbell paid for slow starts as they lost in the flyweight and bantamweight categories respectively.
Super-heavyweight Joshua appeared set to become only GB's second gold medallist in the event's history as he won the first round 8-5 in Baku.
But home fighter Magomedrasul Medzhidov rallied to edge a 22-21 verdict.
For London's Joshua there was reason to be hugely proud of his achievement as in only his second senior tournament the 21-year-old dominated the first round and despite taking a standing eight count in the second did enough in the final session to suggest he can be a real contender for gold next year.
"I'm proud to have got to final," he told
"Congratulations to the winner, he put up a tough fight and wanted it as much as I did. I gave it my best and I lost [but I was] one step away from gold.
"I'm nowhere near the finished article. I've had 35 bouts, been boxing four years and there's so much more to work on.
"I set a goal to give my best and put my heart into it. I did that and that got me to the final and so close to the gold."
While Joshua narrowly failed to hold on to his early advantage, Selby and Campbell never quite managed to recover from sluggish openings.
And although England's Campbell, like Joshua, has the consolation of having already secured his place in the 2012 Olympics, 22-year-old Welshman Selby now faces a box-off against Khalid Yafai for the sole Team GB place in the 52kg category.
Selby felt his performance in round two and, especially, round three after losing the opener 4-2 should have secured not only the top spot on the podium but also his place in London.
"I thought I'd done just enough to win," he said.
"I lost the first but thought I'd brought it back in the second. In the last I thought I'd won by a good two or three points but I ended up losing by a point.
"I wanted gold so much to go to the Olympics but I've got to have a box-off now - I'll have to stay in shape because I don't know when it is."
Campbell, 24, was also left to reflect on the damage done by a low-key opener in which his opponent was continually first to the punch.
"Next time I need to go out there and have a faster start," he admitted.
"Silver is fantastic but I wasn't settling for that, I wanted the gold. Next time I'll come back better - nobody will ever do that to me twice, I'll make sure they won't."