Gabby Adcock was quick to draw on the positives despite her and Chris Adcock falling agonizingly short of opening their Rio 2016 Olympic Games mixed doubles campaign with a win.

Ranked seventh in the world, the Adcocks have been drawn in a tough group which also includes Danish fourth seeds Joachim Fischer Nielsen and Christinna Pedersen, Robert Mateusiak and Nadiezda Zieba of Poland and London 2012 silver medallists Ma Jin and Xu Chen of China. It was against the latter they opened their campaign on Thursday in a clash which included match points for both sides.

But it was the Chinese pairing who seized their opportunity to record a 13-21 22-20 21-15 win.

“We came out and we knew if we got the plan right we are a good enough pair to beat them,” said Gabby Adcock.

“We’ve drawn a really hard group but playing like that, we can definitely cause some upsets so we need to pick ourselves up for tomorrow because there’s still every chance to go through.

“It’s such a hard one. We need to be really pleased with how we played because they’re a world class pair. But we know we’re as good. We know we can beat them and it’s just those fine margins on the day.”

The Adcocks made the perfect start, moving their opponents around the court well to lead 11-5 before building on that momentum to take it 21-13 inside 18 minutes. It was a far tighter affair in the second game, the British pair holding a slender lead for much of it and even served for the match but a service fault let them down and China came back to take the game 22-20.

The Chinese pair had the initiative now and after racing into an 8-4 lead were able to wrap up the final game in 22 minutes.

They next face Fischer Nielsen and Pedersen on Thursday with Chris Adcock insisting confidence was still high.

“Having a point to win it and then falling just short is really difficult,” he said.

“They played really well when it got tight. We had our chance but we have to be really proud of how we played and being in a group situation means we can still progress.

“If we keep playing well, we’ve definitely got a great chance.

“We’re really disappointed at the minute but we’ve got two more games to focus on.”

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