France beat England for European team tilte!

France is celebrating their 1st men's victory ever, while the French women became silver medal winner (pic: FF Squash)

Competing in the event for the 41st time since 1975, and making their 15th appearance in the final, France finally won the men’s European Team Championship for the 1st time after beating favourites and defending champions England in a dramatic final in Herning, Denmark.

England reached the final for the 23rd year in a row and where on course to win their 40th title. However, French No.1 Gregory Gaultier, the World No.3 making his 15th appearance in the event, put the 2nd seeds into the lead with a 4-game win over Peter Barker – and team-mate Mathieu Castagnet extended the lead after surviving a 112-minute marathon over England’s 2nd string Daryl Selby.

England stalwart James Willstrop reduced the deficit after fighting back from 1/2 down to see off Gregoire Marche in 90 minutes – leaving England needing to win the 4th match 3/0 to have the chance of retaining the title.

England debutante Chris Simpson duly took the opener, but when Lucas Serme clinched the 2nd 11-7, the match was abandoned and France’s historic and long-awaited title breakthrough was achieved!

Germany became 3rd after beating the Scots 3/1 in the 3rd place play-off and England won the women’s trophy for the 37th time after beating France 2/1 in the final.

Men’s final:
[2] FRANCE bt [1] ENGLAND 9-6 on games countback
Gregory Gaultier bt Peter Barker 12-10, 11-8, 10-12, 11-3 (64m)
Mathieu Castagnet bt Daryl Selby 6-11, 11-9, 11-4, 14-12 (112m)
Gregoire Marche lost to James Willstrop 5-11, 11-7, 11-6, 8-11, 8-11 (90m)
Lucas Serme v Chris Simpson 5-11, 11-7 (match unfinished)

3rd place play-off:
[3] GERMANY bt [4] SCOTLAND 9-6 on games countback
Simon Rösner bt Alan Clyne 3-11, 11-3, 11-4, 11-9 (59m)
Raphael Kandra lost to Greg Lobban 5-11, 7-11, 11-5, 7-11 (57m)
Jens Schoor v Douglas Kempsell 12-10, 9-11, 11-6 (match unfinished)
Rudi Rohrmuller bt Kevin Moran 11-4, 11-8, 10-12, 11-8 (57m)

Women’s final:
[1] ENGLAND bt [2] FRANCE 2/1
Sarah-Jane Perry bt Coline Aumard 11-4, 11-6, 2-11, 11-6 (36m)
Alison Waters lost to Camille Serme 7-11, 4-11, 11-9, 5-11 (45m)
Emma Beddoes bt Laura Pomportes 11-5, 11-5, 11-4 (28m)

3rd place play-off:
[4] IRELAND bt [6] DENMARK 2/1
Madeline Perry bt Line Hansen 13-11, 11-9, 11-8
Aisling Blake bt Sally Skaarenborg 11-6, 11-5, 11-6
Ciara Moloney lost to Mathilde Lauridsen 7-11, 3-11