Tokyo 2020 digest: O’Donovan and McCarthy etch their names into Irish history

The Morning Sports Briefing: Keep ahead of the game with ‘The Irish Times’ sports team

Ireland’s Fintan McCarthy and Paul O’Donovan stand for the national anthem with their gold medals. Photo: Bryan Keane/Inpho

Ireland’s Fintan McCarthy and Paul O’Donovan stand for the national anthem with their gold medals. Photo: Bryan Keane/Inpho

 

A historic night for Ireland. The winning machine that is Skibbereen rowing has made it to the biggest stage with Fintan McCarthy and Paul O’Donovan taking their place on the podium in the early hours of this morning with Olympic gold medals around their necks. The Irish men’s lightweight double sculls team went into this morning’s Olympic final heavily fancied for a gold medal and they delivered in style, leading the race home ahead of Germany to win a first ever rowing gold medal for Ireland and etch their names in history. For Johnny Watterson’s report from the Sea Forest Waterway you can click here while Ian O’Riordan spoke to the two gold medalists afterwards about just how they felt to join the most select club of Irish Olympians. We will have plenty more reaction and analysis through the morning and you can keep up to date with it all on our dedicated Tokyo 2020 website.

Elsewhere, it’s been a good morning for Robert Dickson and Seán Waddilove in the men’s 49er sailing with the Irish duo taking second and fifth in the day’s two races, moving up to seventh overall while Annalise Murphy has won the seventh race in the women’s laser radial and finished second in the eighth to give her chances of getting into the medal race a real boost. You can catch up on all of the rest of the overnight Irish action with our Day 6 round-up. In other Olympics news, sport has always played a role in the culture war of the United States but during this Games it’s taken on a new guise altogether with Donald Trump and numerous Republicans seeming to revel in the women’s soccer team’s loss to Sweden. In his column this morning Dave Hannigan takes a closer look. Meanwhile, in Sonia O’Sullivan’s column this morning, she is writing about how Olympic debutants have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Moving on to GAA and Ciarán Murphy is writing about Joe Canning in his column this morning after the Galway hurler yesterday announced his retirement. Describing that winning point against Tipperary in 2017, he writes “he can’t help stealing a long glance at the ball as it goes over, the Cusack Stand in paroxysms behind him. Who couldn’t love this game? Who couldn’t love this player?” The news of Canning’s retirement came as somewhat of a surprise yesterday and tributes have been paid since, led by Micheál Donoghue.

In rugby, Gerry Thornley writes that Lukhanyo Am has the silk and the steel to unpick the Lions’ lock in this Saturday’s second Test while, in soccer, Bohemians are set for a big European night at Lansdowne Road today as they face Dudelange, winning 1-0 on aggregate from the first leg.

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