Kirsty bows out at quarter-final stage

A valiant effort from Kirsty Gilmour in her hunt for a third consecutive medal in the European Championships fell agonisingly short as she suffered defeat in the quarter finals.

The 24-year-old, who won back-to-back silvers in the 2016 and 2017 women’s singles, would have been guaranteed a medal had she found a way past Line Højmark Kjaersfeldt.

But overcoming her Danish opponent proved one step too far as the second seed was defeated 21-14 21-16 in the last eight of the tournament in Huelva, Spain.

Gilmour, who won bronze in the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, kept in touch with Kjaersfeldt in the first game before the number six seed moved into a 9-4 lead.

The Scot then showed her fighting spirit to reduce the deficit to a point at 12-11, but Kjaersfeldt moved away with the opening game from there to take it by a seven-point margin.

Gilmour tested her opponent even more in the second game, and took the lead on three different occasions, but Kjaersfeldt eventually gained the upper hand to secure victory.

Speaking afterwards, Gilmour admitted she was frustrated with her performance and said she is now looking forward to taking a week off to recover after a “crazy period”.

“I have a lot of thoughts about the match tonight and that's part of the problem,” Gilmour said.

“I felt hesitant with my shot choices and was overthinking instead of just playing and doing, but Line played a solid game tonight so credit to her.

“She made it very difficult and I just couldn't tap into the good form that I've felt lately.

“Saying that, I'm looking forward to training a little now and prepare for my French club finals next weekend. Then I'm going to have a week to rest and recover from this crazy period.”