Tokyo 2020 Day 8: Irish in action and best of the rest

Saturday: Lowry and McIlroy right in the mix; mixed 4x400m relay team in final

Saturday is one of the quieter days for Irish athletes at this year’s Games but there’s still plenty going on. Weather stopped the second round of the golf on Friday which means that some players still have to complete their last few holes on Saturday morning (Friday night Irish time. After that’s done the third round tee times will be released and both Rory McIlroy and Shane Lowry will be out towards the end of the field after their excellent rounds of 66 and 65 respectively on Friday to move to seven under par and into a tie for seventh. Tee times for the third round are expected to run from 1.30am to 3.18am provided there are no more weather delays.

The athletics swings into action early on with Mark English running in his heat of the men’s 1,500m at 2.22am. At 2.53am Sarah Lavin will make her Olympic debut in the women’s 100m hurdles heats while the first Irish appearance at a track final in this year’s Games comes in the evening session.

After smashing the Irish record in their heat the team of Cillin Greene, Phil Healy, Sophie Becker and Chris O’Donnell will run in the first ever Olympic final of the 4x400m mixed relay at 1.35pm with two of the favourites - the United States and the Dominican Republic - not involved due to their disqualifications in the heats.

At 2.32am Sarah Ennis and Horseware Woodcourt Garrison begin their first dressage test after Austin O’Connor and Colorado Blue and Sam Watson and Tullabeg Flamenco got the Irish team off the mark on Friday.


After their disqualification from Thursday’s races, Robert Dickson and Seán Waddilove look to have had their hopes of reaching the medal race of the men’s 49er dashed but they could still sneak in if they pull off something special in Races 10, 11 and 12 which begin at 4.05am.

The Ireland women’s hockey team lost to India on Friday and that means that they now must beat Olympic champions Britain on Saturday at 12.45pm if they are to advance to the quarter-finals. It’s a huge ask but they’ve been known to pull off surprises before.

To catch up on all of the Irish action from Day 7 you can read our round-up here.

What else is on?

The women’s 100m takes centre stage on the track on Saturday with the semi-finals beginning at 11.15am before the final at 1.50pm. Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Price goes in as the favourite but British hopes lie with Dina Asher-Smith. The race was in the headlines in the lead-up to the Games as the great US hope, Sha’Carri Richardson, was banned after testing positive for cannabis.

Elsewhere the women’s singles tennis final takes place between Belinda Bencuic and Marketa Vondrousova at 7am while the women’s Rugby Sevens concludes, beginning with the semi-finals between New Zealand and Fiji and Britain and France at 3am.

Medal events: 21

Archery (men’s individual), athletics (men’s discus, mixed 4x400m relay, women’s 100m), badminton (men’s doubles), fencing (women’s team sabre), judo (mixed team), rugby sevens (women), sailing (women’s RS:X, men’s RS:X), shooting (trap mixed team, women’s 50m rifle 3 positions), swimming (men’s 100m fly, women’s 200m back, women’s 800m free, mixed 4x100m medley relay), tennis (women’s singles), trampoline (men), triathlon (mixed relay), weightlifting (men’s 81kg, men’s 96kg).

Full Irish schedule for Saturday, July 31st

Tee times TBC Rory McIlroy - Men’s Individual Strokeplay Golf Round 3

Tee times TBC Shane Lowry - Men’s Individual Strokeplay Golf Round 3

2.22am Mark English - Men’s 800m Athletics Round 1

2.32am Sarah Ennis and Horseware Woodcourt Garrison - Eventing Dressage Team and Individual Equestrian

2.53am Sarah Lavin - Women’s 100m Hurdles Athletics Heats

4.05am Robert Dickson and Seán Waddilove - Men’s 49er Sailing Fleet Race 10, 11 and 12

12.45pm Ireland Women’s Hockey Team - v Britain Pool Stages

1.35pm Ireland Mixed Relay Team - Mixed 4x400m Relay Athletics Final