Friday 15 December 2017

Ireland name the first 14 athletes who will be going to the Rio Olympics

Michael Conlon and Paddy Barnes met one of tennis' all time greats today in Rio
Michael Conlon and Paddy Barnes met one of tennis' all time greats today in Rio

Mark Staniforth

Reigning world boxing champion Michael Conlan is among the first group of 14 athletes officially selected to represent Ireland at the Rio Olympic Games.

Conlan is joined by double Olympic bronze medallist Paddy Barnes in a six-strong boxing squad which could still grow due to ongoing qualification opportunities.

The Irish team will also include badminton player Chloe Magee, who previously competed at both the Beijing and London Games.

The 14 selected athletes are:

Badminton: Scott Evans, Chloe Magee.

Boxing: Michael Conlan, Paddy Barnes, Joe Ward, Stephen Donnelly, Brendan Irvine, David Oliver Joyce.

Gymnastics: Kieran Behan, Ellis O'Reilly.

Rowing: Sinead Lynch, Claire Lambe, Paul O'Donovan, Gary O'Donovan.

Ireland chef de mission Kevin Kilty said: "We are delighted to officially welcome the first group of athletes to Team Ireland for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games this summer.

"The athletes selected have fantastic potential and have shown that they are capable of performing against the very best in the world. We will provide them with the best possible high-performance environment in Rio in order that they can perform at their best."

The full Ireland team is expected to number in the region of 85 athletes across up to 14 sports.

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