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Paul and Gary O’Donovan: won silver medal in the lightweight double at the European Championships in Glasgow.  Photograph: Craig Watson/Inpho

Ireland’s senior system has been firing on a number of cylinders – witness the European silver medal for Paul and Gary O’Donovan and the good form th(...)

Ireland’s medallists at the 2017 European rowing championships at Racice, Czech:  Paul O’Donovan, Gary O’Donovan (Silver medals - lightweight men’s double sculls); Mark O’Donovan, Shane O’Driscoll (Gold medals -lightweight pair) and Denise Walsh (Silver medal - lightweight women’s single sculls). Photograph: Inpho

The climb up from the lake at Racice is a tough one, and Paul O’Donovan looked ashen and unsteady on his feet as he approached the interview area. But(...)