Tokyo 2020: Annalise Murphy’s medal hopes suffer big setback

Rio silver medalist sits 32nd overall after four races of the women’s laser radial

Ireland’s Annalise Murphy during the women’s laser radial at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics on Monday. Photo: Dave Branigan/Inpho

Ireland’s Annalise Murphy during the women’s laser radial at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics on Monday. Photo: Dave Branigan/Inpho

 

After a second day of racing at the Olympic Sailing regatta in Tokyo, Annalise Murphy’s dream of achieving a second Olympic medal was dealt a significant blow off Enoshima Island on Monday.

While conditions had improved to her liking with a steady easterly breeze for much of the afternoon, the Rathfarnham sailor scored a 24th and discarded a 37th.

Although six races remain before Sunday’s medal race final, Murphy’s total score is more than 40 points adrift of the top 10 from her 32nd place overall.

“It’s heart-breaking, you put so much into it and it doesn’t reward you,” said an emotional Murphy after coming ashore. “I’m pretty upset.”

Tokyo 2020

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“In my mind, I thought I’d done everything to prepare really well for these Olympics and it would go really well for me. It makes it even harder when it doesn’t go the way I had envisioned.”

Murphy went for the conservative option in the first race after a good start and sailed up the middle of the course. However, her plan was disrupted after the Italian entry tacked in front of her and she ended up mid-fleet.

Her second race of the day became her worst score of the series and the event discard dropped it. However, that meant counting her disappointing opening race where she placed 35th.

Few of the top sailors have escaped lightly so far with most counting at least one bad result.

Norway’s Line Flem Høst holds a narrow two-point lead over Vasileia Karachaliou of Greece.

But for Murphy, nothing short of top 10 results - or better - for the next six races are needed to get back in the hunt.

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