Irish pair finish sixth in A final


ROWING:IRELAND’S SURPRISE packets of Siobhán McCrohan and Claire Lambe showed determination and belief to reach the A final at the World Cup Regatta in Bled, but had to settle for sixth place overall yesterday.

The final was brought forward to an early morning slot because of the fear of thunder storms but it proved to be an unusually predictable race. The US crew of Abelyn Broughton and Ursula Grobler shot away from the rest of the field within a hundred metres and won by over six seconds from Britain’s Hester Goodsell and Sophie Hosking, with Greece third.

Ireland, the Netherlands and Britain’s second crew fought it out at the back of the field, with McCrohan and Lambe fifth for much of the race. In the final 500 metres the Netherlands secured fourth, and Ireland were passed near the end by Britain’s Stephanie Cullen and Andrea Dennis.

Cullen and Dennis had won a hard-fought semi-final on Saturday, with the Netherlands second and McCrohan and Lambe showing character to take the third qualification place ahead of Poland.

Poland’s crew of Magdalena Kemnitz and Agnieszka Renc must feel the young Irish crew are out to get them. The 2009 World Championship silver medallists, who were outraced by the Irish in the heats, held the third place they needed with 500 metres to go in the semi-final, but Dublin woman Lambe and the Galway’s McCrohan had too much for them in the closing stages.

Ireland’s two other lightweight women’s doubles engaged in a battle in the D final which could only be settled by a photo finish – but it was for the final two places, 21st and 22nd overall. For much of the race, Siobhán Jacob and Dympna Kelly held second in the four-boat race, but they were caught near the line by Sarah Dolan and Sheila Clavin.

The two lightweight men’s doubles, both under-23 crews, ended with good performances. Niall Kenny and Justin Ryan raced well to finish third in the C final, 15th overall, while Mark O’Donovan and Michael Maher ended their regatta with a pillar-to-post win in the D final of the men’s lightweight double scull, placing them 19th overall.

Cathal Moynihan’s campaign in the lightweight single scull finished with a third-place finish in the B final, ninth overall. The Kerryman could not make an impression in his semi-final, which was won easily by Britain’s Zac Purchase, a gold medallist yesterday.

The Ireland adaptive mixed coxed four finished fourth and Karol Doherty was second in the B final of the arms-and-shoulders single scull, eighth overall.

There were two silver medals for Coleraine men competing for Britain: Alan Campbell had to give way to Ondrej Synek in the single scull, while Richard Chambers the bowman of the lightweight four which was second to Denmark. The lightweight double featuring Richard Chambers (20) finishes sixth in the B Final, 12th overall.

Portora’s entry spiced up a sometimes lacklustre Trinity regatta on Saturday, and the Enniskillen club savoured the best dish themselves as their junior eight beat Trinity in the senior eight final.

It was a day for youth, as Commercial’s senior women’s eight, with four juniors on board, beat the hosts in the senior women’s eight. Shauna Keane, the bow woman, is just 16 years old, and the cox, Rory Keogh, is just 10.

Trinity’s novice women’s eight bested rivals UCD in a hard-fought women’s novice eight final.