Monday 27 February 2017

Behan silver adds to O'Reilly history

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Kieran Behan. Photo: Sportsfile
Kieran Behan. Photo: Sportsfile

Kieran Behan followed up Ellis O'Reilly's historic achievement in becoming the first female Irish gymnast to qualify for the Olympics by claiming silver for his performance on the Floor in the Apparatus Final at the Aquece Rio Test Event in the HSBC Barra Olympic Arena in Rio.

Behan qualified for the final in fourth place on Saturday night, scoring 14.966 on the floor in the qualifiers. Last night he scored 15.058 and was in first place for a period before being pushed into second towards the end of the rotation.

History was made when O'Reilly (18) won through at the final qualifying event for the Olympic 2016.

Gymnastics Ireland CEO Ciaran Gallagher said: "This is a huge step forward for our women's programme and Ellis' achievement will serve to inspire to all the young up and coming Irish gymnasts who will want to follow in her footsteps.

"The focus for Ellis and coach Sam James now shifts to the Games where she will join Kieran in flying the Irish flag at the most prestigious competition in our sport.

"It was an ambitious target set by Sally Filmer, our performance and technical manager, four years ago to qualify one male and one female gymnast to Rio but today it is a target achieved."

O'Reilly, who trains out of the Europa Gymnastics club in London and is coached by James, was absolutely delighted with her performance and history-making result.

Irish Independent

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