Andrew Baggaley. Picture by Steve Parkin

Andrew Baggaley was the only English survivor on day one of the Swedish Open.

The Milton Keynes player came from 2-0 down to beat India’s Sathiyan Gnanasekaran 4-2 (11-13, 6-11, 11-9, 14-12, 11-6, 11-4) in the first round.

He will face Stephane Ouaiche in the next round at about 7.15pm UK time today.

Baggaley is the only Englishman to join Liam Pitchford in the later stages – Pitchford is seeded No 22 for the event and is due to play his first match in the singles on Friday afternoon.

Russian Open hero Paul Drinkhall was brought down to earth as he was defeated 4-2 by Florent Lambiet.

Drinkhall, who reached the final in Ekaterinburg, fell foul of the straight knockout nature of the Swedish event, being beaten 11-13, 11-8, 11-5, 11-13, 7-11, 8-11 by the Belgian world No 257.

Sam Walker and David McBeath also fell at the first hurdle in Stockholm.

Walker faced a tough clash in the men’s singles against world No 68 Simon Gauzy of France.

Although he levelled at 1-1 with an 11-2 second game, Gauzy then took a close third and went on to win 4-1 (6-11, 11-2, 12-14, 3-11, 10-12).

The 19-year-old Worksop player was also beaten 3-1 (8-11, 9-11, 11-6, 10-12) in the first round of the under-21 singles by the host nation’s Johan Hagberg.

McBeath had also been handed a difficult draw as he faced up to world No 82 Grigory Vlasov of Russia, who duly won 4-0 against the No 325-rated Southampton player (11-4, 11-7, 11-3, 11-5).

The doubles events begin today, with Drinkhall and Liam Pitchford taking on Frane Kojic and Filip Zeljko of Croatia, while Walker and McBeath face Indian pair Amalraj Anthony and Sanil Shetty. Both matches are due on court at 11am UK time.

Paul Stimpson
November 12, 2014