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leap make a big splash!

CANOEING: In a thrilling finish to the Liffey Descent, Salmon Leap's Gary Mawer and Barry Watkins out-sprinted the Spanish boat of Luis Amado-Perez Blanco and Miguel Llorens Lopez  for a famous victory in 1 hrs 48 mins 39 secs.

After the heavy rain of the previous day, Palmerstown weir took many victims - among them last year's winners, Peter Egan and Jon Simmons, who capsized while lying second. They ended up fourth.

A spill at the same weir ended the record hopes of Jenny Egan and her British Olympic squad partner Jonathan Boyton. They still finished first mixed pair and sixth overall in 1: 58.44 secs - two minutes off the time Egan recorded with a different partner two years ago.

Spain's Federico Vega Suarez won men's K1 in 1:57.17, with Salmon Leap's Liam McCarthy second.

BADMINTON: Juan Manuel Fernandez Quiles of Spain, currently training at the National Badminton Centre in Dublin, caused the shock of the tournament when he won the men's singles at the Connacht Open in Sligo.

In the final, he faced top seed Jonathan Dolan, who earlier this year withdrew from international competition. Dolan won the opening game, but the second tested both players to their limit, with Quiles coming out on top, 24-22. Fitness then played its part and Quiles wrapped up the match 21-16 in the third.

Irish junior international Rachael Darragh won the women's title, beating Jennie King in two games. King and Sinead Chambers took the women's doubles, with Chambers pairing up with brother Ciarán to win a second title in the mixed doubles.

Edward Cousins and Mark Cobbe won the men's doubles.

Juniors take centre stage this weekend with the Munster Junior Open taking place in Limerick.

TABLE TENNIS: Two Irish national teams as well as teams representing Munster and Ulster will compete in the opening round of the British Junior League on the weekend of October 18.

Both the Irish boys' and girls' teams compete in the premier division, as do the Ulster girls. Munster girls compete in Division 1 and Ulster boys in Division 3A. Selected for the Irish boys' team are Zak Wilson, Tom Davis and Alan Walsh. Katie McGlone, Kate Whelan and Rebecca Finn make up the girls' squad.

This weekend, Castlebar hosts the Connacht Senior Open; Sara Timlin and Peter Graham are the defending champions.

VOLLEYBALL: Naas VC, packed with Irish internationals, got quite a scare in their opening women's premier league match against Tallaght Rockets last weekend.

With two sets in the bag, they were coasting to victory when the Rockets came back with a bang.

They won the third set 25-13 and then a nail-biting fourth at 25-23. In the fifth, Naas scrambled a 15-12 win.

Defending champions DVC open their campaign today with a match against NUIG Alliance in Clondalkin.

In the men's top division, last year's champions UCD beat Ballymun Patriots Eagles after an epic five-setter, while Ballymun Patriots X also took five sets to beat DVC.

PARALYMPICS: Para-badminton will make its debut at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

The sport was one of 16 sports approved for inclusion earlier this week.

Athletics, archery, boccia, equestrian, goalball, powerlifting, rowing, shooting, sitting volleyball, swimming, table tennis, triathlon, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair rugby and wheelchair tennis also got the nod.