Ireland make Olympic rowing history

Rio de Janeiro, Aug 13 (IANS) Ireland made history by winning its first rowing medal (silver in the lightweight men’s double sculls) while Britain snatched two gold medals both in the men’s four and women’s pair event at the ongoing Olympic Games here.

Ireland claimed silver behind France in the lightweight men’s double sculls. The silver was Ireland’s first medal in rowing at an Olympic Games as well as the first medal for Ireland at the 2016 Olympic Games while Norway took bronze, its second rowing medal at the 2016 Games here on Friday, reports Xinhua.

“I suppose it’s hard to know what it means because it’s never been done by anyone before,” said Paul O’donovan on what it means to win Ireland’s first rowing medal.

On the other hand, Britain became the first NOC to win this event five times in a row, breaking the record of four set by themselves between 1908 and 1932.

When asked about the reasons behind Britian’s domination of this class Alex Gregory, member of the crew, said “If I told you that secret we wouldn’t be able to do it again. But it’s actually really simple: we just put a lot of miles in, and somehow we practice what we do in a race, and thankfully we get it right. But everyone on this table does that, so maybe a little bit of luck on the day.”

Australia settled for silver, also its sixth medal in the men’s four. While Italy took a bronze, its first medal in this event since 2004, when it also took bronze.

Britain won women’s pair for the second time in a row. Heather Stanning and Helen Glover are the first British women to win the same rowing event twice. New Zealand and Denmark took silver bronze respectively.

“We crossed the line and felt like Olympic champions. In London, we crossed the line and six months later we felt like Olympic champions,” Britian’s Glover explained the difference from last time they became Olympic champions.

When asked about her future plan, Stanning replied “At the moment, we want to enjoy what we’ve done today and then take stock away from this environment. I do intend to return to work with the Army for the next year.”

The Netherlands won its second gold medal in the lightweight women’s double sculls after gold in 2008. Canada claimed silver, its second medal in this event after a bronze medal in 2008. China took bronze after silver in 2012. Huang Wenyi won her second medal in this event after that silver in 2012, when she partnered with Xu Dongxiang.



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