Players tuning up for Tokyo 2020 qualifying bid

Paul Stimpson

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Great Britain are in a good place to give their all at the Olympic Team Qualifying tournament in Portugal next week – that’s the message coming out of their training camp.

Liam Pitchford, Paul Drinkhall and Tom Jarvis have been working hard at the University of Nottingham under the guidance of coach Gavin Evans. Team-mate Sam Walker has been playing French League matches this week and will join up with the squad later. The women’s line-up of Tin-Tin Ho, Maria Tsaptsinos and Wales’ Charlotte Carey have been preparing overseas.

Coach Gavin Evans said: “The boys are in really good shape, they’re where they need to be right now. The intensity is really good and it’s getting better and better the closer we get to the tournament. We’re very confident, but understanding that there are a lot of tough teams that we are going to have to beat to qualify.”

Pitchford, Drinkhall, and Walker are all beneficiaries from the Aspiration Fund given by UK Sport to aid athletes in qualification for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

The draw for the qualifying tournament is on Monday and the tournament starts on Wednesday – full preview on the Table Tennis England website early next week.

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