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O'Donovans have golden touch

Wednesday, 18th July, 2018 5:11pm

Cork rowers Paul and Gary O’Donovan have returned victorious after winning gold at the World Rowing Cup.

The duo won gold at the World Rowing Cup III in Lucerne, Switzerland, while teammate Sanita Puspure took home silver.

The trio were welcomed home at Cork Airport earlier this week.

The Olympic silver medal-winning brothers from Skibbereen were placing third in their men’s lightweight sculls race before pushing ahead, eventually crossing the line 0.8 of a second ahead of Belgium.

Speaking after the race, Gary told World Rowing: “It was a pretty good race, Denmark took over for a while but then we swapped. We managed to throw ourselves over the finish line in first.”

The O’Donovans will compete for Ireland in the lightweight men’s double at the European Championships over the August Bank Holiday weekend.

Meanwhile, Cork-based Sanita Puspure took home silver in an incredibly exciting race in the women’s sngles sculls.

Puspure, who won silver at World Cup II in Belgrade in May, was pipped at the finish line by 0.23 of a second by the world champion Jannine Gmelin from Switzerland.

Speaking after the race, Sanita told World Rowing: “That was a tough race, really physical out there but the conditions were really good. I always enjoy racing here.”

World Champion lightweight men’s pair Mark O’Donovan and Shane O’Driscoll placed third in the B Final of the men’s pair last weekend, while the Irish women’s double scull of Aileen Crowley and Monika Dukarska also placed third in the B final of the W2x. UCC’s Aifric Keogh and Tara Hanlon came fourth in the B final of the women’s pair.

Speaking about the success of the Irish rowers at the event following the recent Irish Rowing Championships in Cork, CEO of Rowing Ireland Michelle Carpenter said: “This was a fantastic weekend for Irish rowing. We had an amazing three days here in Cork, where some new course records have been set by our younger rowers, and to see our senior athletes winning medals on the international stage at World Cup level is a fantastic achievement and a huge inspiration.

“I’d like to personally congratulate all our athletes on their successes, especially Gary, Paul and Sanita, who have represented Ireland so well at international level.”

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