The poster boys of Irish rowing, Paul and Gary O’Donovan had some tough acts to follow when they lined up for the final of the lightweight men’s sculls at the European Championships in Prague this morning.
The duo’s Irish teammates and Skibbereen clubmates Mark O’Donovan and Shane O’Driscoll had already won gold in the men’s lightweight pairs, while another Skib rower, Denise Walsh, had taken silver in the women’s single sculls.
Paul and Gary may not have matched Mark and Shane’s gold, but they still turned in a remarkable display to finish in the silver medal position behind the reigning Olympic champions, France.
As they often do, the O’Donovans got off to a slow start but powered back over the last quarter of the race, giving the delighted commentators ample opportunity to talk about the lads pulling like dogs. France were way out in front by the time the O’Donovans, who won gold at this event last year, really got moving, but the Irish pair passed the Poles and dramatically pipped the Italians for second on the line.
H/t to Balls.ie for the footage.
After the race, Paul and Gary told RTÉ about how they had been inspired by the performances of Mark, Shane and Denise earlier in the day, before delivering the inevitable comedy gold.
— RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) May 28, 2017