GARY and Paul O’Donovan will race for gold in the A final of the lightweight men's double sculls at World Rowing Cup I in Belgrade on Sunday.
The Skibbereen brothers were the winners of a tightly contested race in semi-final two on Saturday morning, booking them a spot in the medal race tomorrow where they will face crews from Switzerland, Poland, Austria, Canada and Belgium.
The heavyweight men's pair of Skibbereen's Mark O'Donovan and Shane O'Driscoll were first to race on Saturday morning in the C final of the heavyweight pair, to determine the 13th-18th overall placings. The Irish pair took up third position from early on in the race and retained it to the line, finishing in third place ahead of Great Britain (Two) and China, and placing 15th overall out of a total of 22 entries.
Later, the women's double scull (Aileen Crowley, Monika Dukarska) and women's pair (Skibbereen’s Emily Hegarty, Aifric Keogh) were both fourth in their respective A/B semi-finals, narrowly missing out on A final qualification for which a minimum top three placing was required.
Both crews will now contest the B Finals on Sunday morning, which equals a guaranteed top 12 overall placing – a hugely positive result for the two newly formed heavyweight female crews.
**UPDATED Race Times for Irish crews @WorldRowing #WRCBelgrade, Sun 3rd June due to adverse weather**
09:12 : LM2X A Final
10:12 : W1X A Final
10:41 : W2- B Final
10:51 : W2X B Final
11:16 : LW2X B Final
All times IST. Good luck to all crews âï¸ #GreenBlades #TeamRowingIreland
— Rowing Ireland (@RowingIreland) June 2, 2018
Ireland's final female crew of Denise Walsh and Margaret Cremen were sixth in the second semi-final of the lightweight women's double sculls, meaning the B final awaits them on Sunday morning, again guaranteeing a top 12 overall placing despite their very short time rowing together as a crew.
Sanita Puspure, in the women's single sculls, sculler produced a performance worthy of second place and qualification for the all-important A Final.