Tuesday 20 August 2019

English and Egan frustrated by fourth-placed agony in Minsk

Felix English. Photo: Sportsfile
Felix English. Photo: Sportsfile

Cathal Dennehy

The frustration of fourth place was etched on the faces of track cyclist Felix English and canoeist Jenny Egan at the European Games in Minsk yesterday, writes Cathal Dennehy.

Egan came up one place shy of the medals in the K1 5,000m in her third race of the day, having earlier finished eighth in the B finals of both the K1 200m and 500m. "To come fourth again after coming fourth four years ago is tough," said Egan. "But I did my best." Ronan Foley finished 16th in the men's K1 5,000m final.

In track cycling, English surrendered a bronze medal in the dying metres of the men's scratch race, the 26-year-old caught by Yauheni Karaliok of Belarus. "Everyone was watching each other closely and it came down to a big bunch sprint," said English. "I was convinced I had third and (he) came from nowhere."

The women's team pursuit finished fifth in their qualifying round in 4:31.358, moving on to the next round today where they have an opportunity to qualify for the medal ride-offs. Lydia Boylan finished 11th in the women's points race.

Elsewhere, Chloe and Sam Magee have the chance to add to Ireland's medal haul when the siblings contest the quarter-final of the badminton mixed doubles. The Donegal duo won bronze at this event in 2015, and they will emulate that feat - at least - if they beat Dutch pair Robin Tabeling and Selena Piek today.

The Magees recorded a straight-sets win over Aliaksei Konakh and Krestina Silich of Belarus in their final group game, then endured a nervous wait for the result of France-Russia before their place was confirmed. "We knew we had obviously done everything we could, but it was hard to watch," said Chloe. "We're happy to be through."

There was less joy for team-mate Nhat Nguyen, the Dublin teenager exiting the men's singles after a straight-sets loss to Britain's Toby Plenty.

In gymnastics, Adam Steele and Emma Slevin were in action in the all-around events, where both recorded scores just shy of their personal bests - not enough to advance to the final.

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