There were mixed feelings for England at the 2020 European Men’s and Women’s Team Championships in Lievin, France.
The men’s team advanced to the quarter-finals where they will meet Netherlands after a clean sweep of victories in the group.
But the women’s side agonisingly missed out on a place in the last eight after finishing runners-up.
The men’s team got their campaign off to a superb start as they defeated Estonia 4-1 on Tuesday – but they had to come from behind.
Toby Penty took the first game 21-13 only for Raul Must to win the next 21-17 and the decider 21-15 but Alex Lane got England back on track with a 21-14, 21-15 victory over Karl Kert. Ben Lane teamed up with Sean Vendy to put England in front, winning 21-13, 21-14 against Kristjan Kaljurand and Raul Kӓsner.
David Jones then edged Mihkel Laanes in three games before Marcus Ellis and Gregory Mairs beat Kert and Hans-Kristjan Pilve 21-11, 21-11.
England then proved too strong against Greenland, running out 5-0 winners. Penty (21-7, 21-10), Jones (21-8, 21-9) and Harry Huang (21-12, 21-4) sent their side on their way before Vendy and Tom Wolfenden, and Lane and Mairs completed the rout with triumphs in the doubles.
England were on a roll and they continued that momentum on Thursday when they saw off Sweden 4-1 to finish top of Group 2 with Penty starting off with a three-game victory, Lane lost 21-19, 21-17 to Jacob Nilsson but Huang hit back by beating Andy Tsai 21-11, 21-12.
And there was more joy in the doubles as Lane and Vendy saw off Joel Hansson and Melker Z-Bexell 21-15, 21-12 before Marcus Ellis and Wolfenden overcame Nilsson and Ludvig Petre Olsson 21-9, 21-12.
The women’s team would have been hoping to add to England’s success, but they were hit by an opening-day 4-1 defeat to France.
Chloe Birch lost 21-14, 21-13 to Qi Xuefei before Jenny Moore and Victoria Williams were also beaten and France then moved 3-0 in front after Marie Batomene downed Abigail Holden 21-13, 21-18.
Birch and Lauren Smith beat Delphine Delrue and Anne Tran 21-18, 21-16 to get England on the board but Freya Redfearn fell to defeat.
England did not get off to the best of starts against Israel with Holden losing 21-23, 21-17, 21-11 to Ksenia Polikarpova but they came back firing with Pamela Reyes and Grace King both winning in three games.
There was also double delight for Moore and Williams (21-5, 21-13) and Birch and Smith (21-9, 21-9) and England then put themselves in with a chance of progressing to the quarter-finals after thrashing Belarus 5-0.
But it was not enough to send England who came second in Group 3 through, as Scotland took the best runners-up spot.