A PULSATING fight wasn’t enough as Chloe and Sam Magee were beaten in a gripping match at the European Games.
By Chris McNulty at the Falcon Club, Minsk
The Raphoe siblings lost to Thom Gicquel and Delphine Delrue, the fourth seeds, from France, 22-20 19-21 16-21.
An opening night win over Evgenij Dremin and Evgenia Dimova had clearly energised the Magees.
The Donegal duo burst from the blocks and led by four points before the French fought back to level at 9-9 and again at 10 apiece.
Gicquel and Delrue led for the first time in the game at 11-10.
The Franch pair moved 15-11 ahead, but the Magees stayed right in touch before gaining the 18-17 edge.
There was a real purpose above the Magees as they took the necessary two-point advantage after the score was level at 20-20.
The Magees had a good start to the second game, leading 3-0 and 4-1.
At the interval, though, Delrue and Gicquel led 11-9.
The French were to the pins of their collar before taking a 21-19 win, under a stern cross-examination from the players in green.
In the third, Delrue and Gicquel took a firm grip at 11-5 in front, leaving the Magees with it all to do, and the French pair didn’t hold up to finish well and take the win.
The Magees face Aleksei Konakh and Kristina Silich from Belarus on Thursday morning.
Last night, the Magees defeated Dremin and Dimova from Russia 16-21 21-19 21-15.
It was a display of real guts by the Magee pair as they battled from a game down and fell 19-13 behind in the second.
The Magees, though, found something from within to take the win and they’ll still be hopeful of making it to the knockout phase.
They are joined in Minsk by brother Joshua, who is in men’s doubles action later today and their niece, Rachael Darragh, is in women’s singles action.
Another brother, Daniel, is Irish coach.