Ireland’s mixed 4x400m relay team are delighted to have shown they can compete on the international stage after coming eighth in the Olympic final.
Cillin Greene, Phil Healy, Sophie Becker and Chris O’Donnell made history when they became Ireland’s first relay team to compete in an Olympic final in Tokyo, having broken the national record in the semi-final yesterday.
The quartet were speaking to RTE after racing in the final and expressed their immense pride in having competed on the big stage at this year’s Tokyo Olympics.
After qualifying for an Olympic final the mixed 4x400m team of Cillin Greene, Phil Healy, Sophie Becker and Chris O’Donnell are now looking forward to more big days on the international stage#olympics #Tokyo2020 #RTESport pic.twitter.com/lM4mTXP1Se
— RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) July 31, 2021
‘Getting to an Olympic final is just a dream come true.’
“Eighth in an Olympic final. Getting to the Olympic Games was a massive achievement. Getting to an Olympic final is just a dream come true. Every member of the team stepped up today and performed,” Phil Healy said.
“It was inside our old national record coming into here, it’s a credit to the two subs in the warm-up and the three other members that played a massive part in getting the team to qualify.
“As well as our individual coaches and of course, [coach] Drew Harrison, leading the way for us, who got us to this Olympic final.”
‘We’ve really built a platform for the years to come.’
Ireland isn’t exactly famed for it’s prowess when it comes to running, with the country’s last Olympic medal in the sport coming from John Treacy’s second place finish in the men’s marathon in 1984.
However, Chris O’Donnell, the man who finished off the race for Ireland, pointed to Ireland’s seventh place finish in the World Athletics Relays in Poland earlier this May, as a sign of Ireland’s consistent performances in the mixed relay.
“We built a really, really good platform for ourselves this year. We finished seventh at the World Relays, eighth at the Olympic Games,” O’Donnell commented.
“If Ireland were regulars at a World Cup quarter-final, we’d be happy. We should be proud of ourselves. We’ve really built a platform to build on for years to come, we hope to be regulars here.
“We were right behind the sprinting powerhouse in Jamaica there, we just seen they got a 1-2-3 in the sprint [women’s 100m final]. We gave it absolutely everything, eighth in the world and I couldn’t be prouder of everyone.”