Paul O’Donovan on course for medal delight

Paul O’Donovan has maintained a steady course for a second medal in a fortnight, winning his heat in Rotterdam yesterday to qualify for the Lightweight Men’s Single Sculls final at the World U23 Rowing Championship.

The O’Donovan brothers have grown accustomed to slow starts and Paul again toiled early in yesterday afternoon’s race.

But a fantastic surge in the middle part of the course moved him from sixth to second.

From there, it was nip and tuck with Slovenia’s Rajko Hrvat, before Olympic silver medalist O’Donovan eventually took the heat by half a second.

It was an impressive row in a fast time, particularly given the temperatures were rising into the 30s and O’Donovan will now be among the favourites for gold in tomorrow’s final.

Lightweight Pair A/B Semi-Final Two (Three to A Final; rest to B Final):

1 France 6:30.56, 2 Ireland (M O’Donovan, S O’Driscoll) 6:32.18, 3 United States 6:33.19; 4 Brazil 6:35.07, 5 Italy 6:37.34, 6 Spain 6:40.82

Lightweight Single Sculls - A/B Semi-Final One (Three to A Final; rest to B Final):

1 Ireland (P O’Donovan) 6:51.71, 2 Slovenia 6:52.31, 3 Germany 6:52.32; 4 Spain 6:53.21, 6 Italy 7:17.33

Under-23 Quadruple Sculls - B Final (Places 7 to 12):

1 Russia 5:54.0; 6 Ireland (D Buckley, J Casey, P Boomer, S McKeown) 6:01.78


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