European champions Elizabeta Samara and Dimitrij Ovtcharov

Ovtcharov and Samara take the top titles

Paul Stimpson

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Dimitrij Ovtcharov successfully defended his European Championships Men’s Singles crown, beating Portugal’s Marcos Freitas in five sets (14-12, 9-11, 11-9, 11-4, 11-6) in Ekaterinburg.

Top seed Ovtcharov, who beat Liam Pitchford in the last 16, adds the title to the European Games gold he took in Baku earlier this year.

No 3 seed Elizabeta Samara of Romania won the Women’s Singles title, beating No 4 seed Li Jie of the Netherlands 4-3 (11-6, 9-11, 3-11, 11-7, 12-14, 11-4, 11-4).

In the doubles, men’s team champions Austria dominated the final. And it was Stefan Fegerl who made it double gold, alongside Joao Monteiro of Portugal. The beat Austrian pair and top seeds Robert Gardos and Daniel Habesohn in a thrilling match, saving one match point before completing victory 4-3 (11-9, 14-12, 6-11, 8-11. 13-15, 11-8, 12-10).

Turkey’s Hu Melek and Spain’s Shen Yanfei won the Women’s Doubles, beating Hungary’s Georgina Pota & Samara 4-1 (11-4, 11-7, 11-9, 11-13, 11-4).

As well as the England men, the other Home Nations singles player in Ekaterinburg was Charlotte Carey of Wales.

She was eliminated in the groups stages of the singles, losing 3-0 (11-5, 11-7, 11-4) to Yi Fang Xian of France and also to Monika Molnar of Serbia (11-6, 11-7, 11-7) but beating Maryam Imanova of Azerbaijan 3-0 (11-6, 11-2, 11-9).

In the doubles, she and partner Chiara Colantoni of Italy received a walkover against Spanish pair Galia Dvorak & Maria Xiao, were beaten 3-2 by Swiss pair Rahel Aschwanden & Rachel Moret (11-5, 9-11, 9-11, 12-10, 11-8) and also in five by Eline Loyen & Lisa Lung of Belgium (8-11, 5-11, 11-6, 12-10, 11-8).

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