CHLOE Magee did her county and her country proud today as she just failed to qualify for the last 16 at the London Olympics.
There were huge cheers from the 6,000-strong crowd at the Wembley Arena as Chloe fought back time and again but she eventually lost by two games to one to the much more experienced Hongyan Pi.
The 23-year-old Raphoe woman can hold her head high after putting in a superb performance.
She said “I’m frustrated because I know I had the winning of that match” said the Raphoe girl. “But she was very clever and maybe her experience told in the end. But I’m pleased at least with how I performed today.”
She took the first game 21-16 as the Chinese-born French opponent looked nervous.
At 6-6 in the second game, Chloe committed a rare unforced error.
But then Hongyan Pi also committed the same mistake before going on to take a 11-8 lead at the break.
As Chloe closed down the lead she let a drop shot fall – but it was just in and Chloe hit the shuttlecock away in frustration.
But she followed that with a great smash.
The rest of the game ebbed and flowed – but Pi took the second game 21-18 despite some battling rallies from the Donegal girl.
In the final game Pi went into the lead, before some cracking shots from Chloe saw her sneak into a 9-7 lead.
Pi came back to level at 9-9 before the French woman smashed a shot to take the lead again.
The a morale-boosting rally ended with a superb deft shot to level at 10-10.
Pi got lucky as the shuttlecock just landed in and she led 11-10 at the half-way break.
The French player then took a 14-10 lead before Chloe pulled back a couple of points, hitting a super smash at 16-13 to her opponent.
But it wasn’t to be for the Raphoe girl as she lost the last game 21-14.
“I’m frustrated because I know I had the winning of that match” said the Raphoe girl. “But she was very clever and maybe her experience told in the end. But I’m pleased at least with how I performed today.”
By the time Brazil comes around in 2016, there’s little doubt Chloe Magee will be going a lot further at the Olympics.
Chloe – you did us proud.