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Birch progresses on busy opening day of European Championships

Chloe Birch European Championships 2018

Chloe Birch continued her impressive form as she progressed to the second round of the European Championships on an action packed opening day in Huelva, Spain. 

The 22-year-old, who picked up a bronze medal at the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast in the mixed team event, stormed through round one in Spain, defeating Croatia’s Maja Pavlinic 21-18 21-11.

Birch will now face a tricky opponent in the shape of fifth seed Beatriz Corrales of Spain in round two as she looks to make the last 16 of the women’s singles.

Former European Mixed Team Championships bronze medallist Toby Penty also progressed against France’s Lucas Claerbout.

The 25-year-old was too good for the Frenchman, beating him in 30 minutes 21-10 21-7 and will take on second seed Anders Antonsen in round two.

Sam Parsons was also involved in the men’s singles on day one in Huelva against Luka Wraber.

The 22-year-old had to work hard but eventually saw off the Austrian in 49 minutes, winning 21-19 23-21.

Adcocks at European championships 2018

Elsewhere, Gabby and Chris Adcock returned to defend their European crown and made the perfect start against Poland’s Pawel Smilowski and Magdalena Swierczynska.

The Commonwealth champions made light work of their opponents, winning 21-16 21-10 and will face Joachim Fischer Nielsen and Alexandra Boje of Denmark for a place in the quarter-finals.

Gabby Adcock said: “I think it was just getting the job done and being efficient and to get a feel for the arena. I think we did that very well and now we can focus on the next match.

“We are feeling good, we are feeling ready for the tournament and we are just going to take it one game at a time and see how it goes.”

Third seeds Marcus Ellis and Lauren Smith also progressed as they downed Robin Tabeling and Cheryl Seinen from the Netherlands in round one of the mixed doubles.

But there was to be no joy for Ben Lane and Jessica Pugh who pushed Russian duo Rodion Alimov and Alina Davletova all the way, finally going down 21-19 27-25 in Spain.

Photo: Badminton Photo 

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