Sunday 19 November 2017

Lambe hits front early to book semi-final spot

Ireland's Claire Lambe qualified for the semi-finals of the lightweight women's single sculls yesterday at the World U-23 Championships in Lithuania.

The UCD athlete took an early lead and never looked back, despite pressure from the chasing pack, including Rachel Nentvichova of the Czech Republic.

But as the scullers passed the final timing marker at 1500m, the Czech athlete missed a stroke with her left-hand blade and caught a boat-stopping crab.

She picked up the pace, but her confidence was shaken as Chen Oshri of Israel came through to qualify behind Lambe.

But yesterday's semi-finals proved a step too far for two more Irish crews, including Shane O'Driscoll and Jonathan Mitchell in the lightweight men's pairs.

Italy made all the running, hotly pursued by Germany and Hong Kong China, while Ireland finished fifth ahead of Lithuania.

And in the men's heavyweight fours, the new Irish combination of Tom Lynam, Finbar Manning, Eddy Mullarkey and Sean O'Connor, couldn't maintain the pace set by race leaders Germany and the USA.

Ireland had not entered a men's four at this event for five years, and the crew, based around bow pair Eddy Mullarkey and Sean O'Connor had only been training together for three weeks.

Ireland's high performance director Martin McElroy described the four as "very much a work in progress."

The four and lightweight pair will now race in the 'B' finals today.

Irish Independent

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