Stephen McNeice
Stephen McNeice

06.28 28 Jul 2021


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Team Ireland has won its first medal of the Tokyo Olympics.

The rowing women's four team of Aifric Keogh, Eimear Lambe, Fiona Murtagh and Emily Hegarty came third in their final overnight, and will take home bronze.

Australia's team won the gold medal in the race, with the Netherlands taking silver.

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The rowers are the first female athletes to win a medal in rowing for Ireland.

Speaking after the race, the team said: “The race was a blur really, it went by so fast.

"It wasn’t the best race, but we always say we want to be the best on our worst day too, and we pulled that off."

Speaking on Newstalk Breakfast, Noel Lambe - father of medal-winner Eimear - says it was a very special event.

Women's four rowing team takes home Team Ireland's first medal at Tokyo Olympics

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He said: "It was a stressful race - they were really well out the back at the halfway mark. But they showed amazing self-belief to have come back from where they were.

"We knew they had this in them. They believed in themselves, and they hauled it right back."

Olympic events

Meanwhile, the lightweight double sculls team of Paul O'Donovan and Fintan McCarthy cruised into their final after setting a world best time of 6:05.33 in the semi-final.

The duo - considered one of Ireland's top medal hopes - will be hoping for gold in Thursday's final, scheduled for 9:50am local time (1:50am Irish time).

The women’s lightweight double sculls team finished fifth in their semi-final, meaning they go into tomorrow's 'B' final.

Elsewhere, the women's hockey team had a 4-2 defeat to Germany overnight.

It leaves them with one win and two losses in their group so far - but a win against India on Friday could give them a chance of a quarter-final place.

Boxer Kurt Walker has progressed to the quarter-finals of the men's featherweight contest, after defeating reigning World Champion Mirazizbek Mirzakhalilov of Uzbekistan in the round of 16.

Kurt described the win as the "highlight of my career so far".

Team Ireland has a number of competitors in events later today - including Aoife O'Rourke in women's middleweight boxing; Nhat Nguyen in badminton; and swimmer Mona McSharry in the 200m breaststroke heat.

Main image: Emily Hegarty, Fiona Murtagh, Eimear Lambe and Aifric Keogh celebrate winning bronze in the Women's Four during the Rowing at the Sea Forest Waterway on the fifth day of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in Japan. Picture by: Mike Egerton/PA Wire/PA Images

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