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Ireland National Thread | An Bóthar go Tóiceo 2020

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2020 Vision




Athlete Profile:


Ian O'Sullivan


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Sport: Trap Shooting


Age: 20 (born 1996)



  • World Junior Champion in Men's Trap (2014)
  • Bronze medal at European Championships (2015)





Athlete Profile:


Cathal Daniels


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Sport: Eventing


Age: 19 (13 September 1996)



  • Gold medal in Team Eventing at European Junior Championships (2013)
  • Gold medal in Team Eventing at European Junior Championships (2014)
  • Silver medal in Individual Eventing at European Junior Championships (2014)
  • Bronze medal in Individual Eventing at European Young Rider Championships (2015)
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Athlete Profile:


Finn Lynch

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Sport: Sailing


Age: 20 (23 April 1996)



  • Qualified for Rio 2016, becoming Ireland's youngest ever Olympic helmsman - finishing 32nd
  • Silver Medal at the World Youth Championships (2012)
  • Gold Medal at European U-21 Championships in Men's Laser Radial (2013)
  • Silver Medal at European Championships in Men's Laser Radial (2013)





Athlete Profile:


Liam Jegou


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Sport: Canoe Slalom


Age: 20 (09 January 1996)



  • Silver Medal in Men's C1 Slalom at World Junior Championships (2014)
  • 6th place at U-23 European Championships (2015)
  • 7th place at U-23 European Championships (2016)
  • 9th place at U-23 World Championships, qualified in 2nd place for the final (2016)
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2020 Vision




Athlete Profile:


Mona McSharry


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Sport: Swimming


Age: 16 (born 21 August 2000)



  • Silver Medal in 100m Breaststroke at European Junior Championships (2016)
  • Bronze Medal in 50m Breaststroke at European Junior Championships (2016)





Athlete Profile:


Sharlene Mawdsley


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Sport: Athletics


Age: 18 (10 August 1998)



  • 5th place as part of women's 4x100m Relay team at World Junior Championships (2016)
  • Finalist in Women's 200m at European Junior Championships (2015)
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Conor McGregor crowned Irish Sportsperson of the Year for 2016


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UFC superstar Conor McGregor was named the Irish Sportsperson of the Year for 2016 at an awards ceremony on RTÉ on Friday night. It comes after McGregor made history by becoming the first ever two-weight champion in UFC. McGregor is now setting his sights on the boxing world and is reportedly in serious talks about a potential clash with Floyd Mayweather.


Dundalk FC manager Stephen Kenny was crowned Manager of the Year. The O'Donovan brothers claimed the Team of the Year award after their silver medal success in rowing at the Rio Olympics. Fellow Olympic silver medalist Annalise Murphy  (women's laser radial sailing) was recently awarded the Irish Sportswomen of the Year award by Sport Ireland.

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2020 Vision







Lee Cole - Field Hockey





2020 Vision member and rising hockey prospect Lee Cole was on the score-sheet in the opening match of Ireland's World League 2 campaign in Belfast today. As well as playing a vital part in the opening goal of the game with his interception allowing team-mate Jeremy Duncan to convert, Lee smashed home Ireland's fourth in a comprehensive 9-2 victory. The tournament is a stepping stone towards qualification for the 2018 World Cup and a top two finish here will ensure qualification to the Semi-Final stages of the World League.


Up next for Ireland is a match against Austria who took a penalty shoot-out win over Italy in their opening match of the pool.



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Historic European Medal Success for Magee Siblings









Irish badminton are celebrating a first medal at the European Championships after brother and sister mixed doubles pairing Sam and Chloe Magee captured bronze in Kolding, Denmark at the weekend. The European Games bronze medalists replicated that performance, coming through a tough path to reach the semi-finals. The unseeded pair defeated the 5th seeds from the Netherlands in round 1 before conquering the 4th seeded Polish duo in the quarter-finals.


Sam and Chloe eventually bowed out against the number 1 seeds from Denmark Joachim Fischer Nielsen and Christinna Pedersen, losing 21-14, 21-10.


A delighted Chloe had this to say of their medal success:


“I just can’t believe it......we wanted to get that medal and we knew we had a good draw if we played well enough. But we had the number five seeds in the first round so could easily have lost there".


"The aim, the goal was a medal. I think our whole career, that was our aim, winning a medal and we’ve done that today".




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Athletics Ireland selects initial team for IAAF World Championships









Athletics Ireland have named a provisional team of 8 athletes for the World Championships in London this August. The team is comprised of race walkers and marathon runners who will now be able to fine-tune their preparations without the burden of having to chase selection.


Among the athletes pre-selected is 2012 Olympic bronze medalist Robert Heffernan who will again compete in his favoured discipline, the men's 50km walk. He will be joined by fellow Rio 2016 Olympians Alex Wright and Brendan Boyce.


In addition to the men's walking team, the marathon squads have been made known. Two-time European Cross-Country champion Fionnuala McCormack will spearhead the Irish challenge in the women's event alongside Claire Gibbons McCarthy.

The men's team is comprised of 2016 Olympians Paul Pollock and Mick Clohisey and will be joined on the startline by Seán Hehir.



:IRL  Ireland Team - IAAF World Championships - London 2017  :IRL




Men’s 50km Race Walk:

  • Alex Wright (Leevale AC)
  • Brendan Boyce (Letterkenny AC)
  • Robert Heffernan (Togher AC)


Men’s Marathon:

  • Mick Clohisey (Raheny Shamrocks AC)
  • Paul Pollock (Annadale Striders AC)
  • Sean Hehir (Rathfarnham WSAF AC)


Women’s Marathon:

  • Fionnuala McCormack (Kilcoole AC)
  • Clare Gibbons McCarthy (Leevale AC)



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Four Irish boats into A Finals at Rowing World Cup in Belgrade









Ireland will be well represented in Sunday's finals at the first Rowing World Cup of the 2017 season in Belgrade. A total of 4 Irish crews qualified for the A Finals after a successful day of semi-final and repechage action.


Olympic silver-medalists Paul and Gary O'Donovan booked their spot in the final with a convincing win in their lightweight men's double semi. The O'Donovan brothers used their trademark sprint to pull away from the crews from the Netherlands and Spain at the halfway point and will be fighting for a medal tomorrow.


There will also be Irish representation in the men's lightweight pair after Mark O'Donovan and Shane O'Driscoll finished second in their semi-final.


Not to be outdone, the Irish women were in fine form with Sanita Puspure claiming one of the two A Final berths on offer in today's women's single sculls repechage. Denise Walsh was already directly qualified for the A Final of the women's lightweight equivalent after a blistering sprint finish in her heat on Friday saw her come from way down the field at 1500m to claim victory and an automatic qualification spot.


A great start to the World Cup series for the Irish crews, wishing them all the best for tomorrow's finals! :)








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Gold and Silver for Irish boats at Opening Rowing World Cup of 2017









Ireland will be coming home from Belgrade with a gold and silver after today's A Finals at the first Rowing World Cup of the 2017 season.

There was gold for O'Donovan, but perhaps not for the O'Donovan that Irish fans were predicting. Mark O'Donovan and partner Shane O'Driscoll lead from halfway and stormed to gold in the men's lightweight pair ahead of Russia and Great Britain.


Denise Walsh added to the Irish medal tally as she grabbed silver in the women's lightweight single sculls. Her sprinting abilities were again on show as she catapulted from 5th to 2nd in the closing stages, finishing 4 seconds behind the winner from Switzerland.


There was disappointment however for Irish Olympic heroes Gary and Paul O'Donovan as they could only manage 4th place in the men's lightweight single sculls. The brothers were tipped for gold here but could not break onto the podium with Great Britain emerging victorious in the season opener.


Sanita Puspure put in a strong performance in a very fast race to come home in 5th place in the women's single sculls, a pleasing way to kick off her international season.


Speaking after his gold medal success Mark O'Donovan remarked that a new coach, new technique and fresh training regime has helped them make the progress needed to challenge this season:



‘Feeling really good during the race, we’ve got a new coach, so that is a new step for Ireland. Going forward we are going to a training camp in Varese and looking to implement new training and technique before Europeans.’














Edited by OlympicIRL
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  • 3 weeks later...

Three-Medal Haul for Irish Rowers at European Championships









It was a successful morning for the Irish rowers on finals day at the European Championships in the Czech Republic today.

Mark O'Donovan and partner Shane O'Driscoll secured gold in the men's lightweight pairs final. The pairing pulled away after the 600m mark and never relinquished the lead thereafter, finishing well ahead of their nearest challengers from Russia.


Moments later, clubmate Denise Walsh put in a fantastic performance to claim the silver medal in the women's lightweight single sculls. Denise fought her way from 4th at the halfway mark to come home 2nd just behind the winner from Sweden.


Not to be outdone, the O'Donovan brothers completed the hat-trick of medals for the Irish team with a professional performance in the men's lightweight double sculls. The Olympic silver medalists were again outdone by their Rio 2016 nemesis from France, who again have shown they are the crew to beat in this event. It was a tremendously tough field in the men's lightweight doubles here at the Europeans with several of the top crews in the world assembled on the start line.

The Irish brothers looked out of contention for most of the race but their trademark sprint finish saw them move through from 5th place to secure silver and ensure a maximum 100% return on medals from the 3 Irish crews competing at the European Championships.


Well done guys :)


In other rowing news, Antonio Maurogiovanni has been named as the new high performance director of Irish rowing, taking over the role vacated by Morten Espersen. The 51-year-old Italian represented Italy at two Olympic Games (1988 and 1992) and has coached at various levels in Italy, Netherlands and Australia (where most recently he has been coach of the u23 national team coach).

Best of luck to all at Rowing Ireland.... hopefully more success will follow in the years to come!










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