Tokyo 2020 digest: Rowers reach semi-finals while Liam Jegou progresses

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

Ireland’s Liam Jegou competes in the men’s canoe slalom C1. Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Ireland’s Liam Jegou competes in the men’s canoe slalom C1. Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

 

Ireland’s rowers have again put in impressive performances overnight and kept alive the hopes of some medals on the water. In another dominant performance, Sanita Puspure came through her women’s singles sculls quarter-final to secure a semi-final spot, saying afterwards “this is my first semi-final, so I don’t think it’s going to get easier now. So two more very important races ahead. We’ve come a long way and it’s been exciting to see the whole team perform well.” Two more semi-final spots were also secured by Irish rowers when the women’s pair of Aileen Crowley and Monika Dukarska came through their repechage while Aoife Casey and Maragret Cremen managed the same in the women’s lightweight double sculls. Unfortunately for Cork teenager Meg Ryan, her Olympic debut came to an end in the women’s all-around after she scored 47.199 and missed out on a final spot. In the last while Liam Jegou has booked his semi-final spot in the men’s canoe slalom C1 after an improved second run which saw him finish in 11th. A full report on that and all of the rest of the Irish action on Sunday will be in our Day 2 round-up as the morning goes on. We’ve got a busy two weeks ahead as Ireland’s largest ever Olympic team compete in Tokyo and you can follow it all via our special Tokyo 2020 site with Ian O’Riordan and Johnny Watterson reporting from the Japanese capital.

Moving on and yesterday evening the British & Irish Lions got a first Test win under their belt in South Africa thanks to a brilliant fightback which saw them beat the Springboks 22-17. “It wasn’t beautiful, and the Lions rode their luck - not least in seeing two Boks tries disallowed, one of which by the South African TMO Marius Jonker was marginal to say the least,” writes Gerry Thornley. Afterwards, head coach Warren Gatland said he was delighted with the performance but he expects a strong backlash from the hosts when the second Test rolls around. Meanwhile, John O’Sullivan hands out the player ratings for yesterday’s win with Maro Itoje coming out on top.

On to GAA and it’s a big day of football action today as Kerry meet Cork in the Munster final at 4pm after Mayo face Galway in the Connacht decider at 1.30pm. Writing this morning, Malachy Clerkin says it will be the first real test of Ryan O’Donoghue’s credentials today as he fills the gap left by Cillian O’Connor. Meanwhile, Keith Duggan speaks to former Cork All-Ireland winner Paul Kerrigan about his Munster final memories and how often the Rebels have been spited by their near neighbours while Jim McGuinness writes in his column this morning that Gaelic football is now just a shooting contest. “The heart has gone out of Gaelic football. Much as last weekend’s games in Ulster were lauded, I feel that there is a real danger that what makes the game special and unique is about to be lost,” he writes. You can follow all of the action from both matches today on our liveblog. Yesterday, in the hurling, Cork continued their rise to see off Clare while Waterford held on against Galway to book their quarter-final spot.

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