BY KIERAN McCARTHY
OLYMPIC Games’ silver medallist Paul O’Donovan got his bid for world senior championship gold off to the ideal start with a convincing heat win in Rotterdam this evening.
The Skibbereen Rowing Club athlete (22) won the third heat of the lightweight single sculls in 7:11.730, and he was over five seconds clear of Japan in second place, while the Lisheen man was followed over the line by Serbia, China and The Netherlands.
Paul O’Donovan – younger brother to Gary – is now through to the quarter-finals that will be held on Wednesday, which start at 3pm.
Gary and Paul made national and international headlines with their silver medal success at the Olympics in Rio when finishing second in the lightweight men’s double sculls – Ireland’s first-ever rowing medals at an Olympics.
There was also success for Skibbereen rowers Mark O’Donovan and Shane O’Driscoll in Rotterdam today, as they finished second in their heat of the lightweight men’s pair, finishing in a time of 6:38.40, just over a second behind Great Britain. The top two advanced to the A/B semi-final. Mark and Shane’s time was also the second fastest of all the lightweight men’s pair heats.