Aidan Walsh guaranteed boxing medal, while Irish mixed relay team reaches final


  • Boxing: Aidan Walsh assured a minimum of bronze after welterweight win; Kellie Harrington eases into quarter-finals of ladies’s light-weight
  • Golf: Rory McIlroy (66) and Shane Lowry (65) each make large strikes to get to seven below (click here to read full report)
  • Equestrian: In dressage, Sam Watson and Tullabeg Flamenco rating 34.3; Austin O’Connor and Colorado Blue rating 38.00
  • Athletics: Thomas Barr clocks 49.02 to succeed in 400m hurdles semi-finals; Nadia Energy, Louise Shanahan and Síofra Cleirigh Buttner miss out on 800m semi-finals; Eire’s blended 4x400m relay group qualify for Saturday’s remaining
  • Crusing: Annalise Murphy misses out on medal race after ending 14th general after Race 9 and 10 of ladies’s laser radial; Robert Dickson and Seán Waddilove 14th after Races 7, 8 and 9 of 49er
  • Hockey: Eire lose 1-0 to India
  • Swimming: Danielle Hill finishes sixth in her 50m freestyle warmth, lacking out on the semi-final; Daniel Wiffen wins 1,500m warmth however misses out on remaining


A affected person and composed Aidan Walsh assured Eire their first boxing medal of the Tokyo Olympic Video games with a 4-1 win over Mauritian Merven Clair within the Kokugikan Enviornment.

It brings to a few the variety of medals Eire have gained within the first week of competitors – two in rowing and now the medal gained by the Belfast welterweight, who gained his quarter-final largely within the first two rounds of the bout.

The 24-year-old, boxing in his first Olympics, raced to a wise begin and for the primary three minutes was by far the higher boxer. The judges thought so too with all 5 awarding the Monkstown BC fighter the primary spherical 10-9.

Ireland’s Aidan Walsh reacts after defeating Merven Clair of Mauritius to reach the semi-finals in the men’s welterweight division at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Photo: Frank Franklin II/AP Photo
Eire’s Aidan Walsh reacts after defeating Merven Clair of Mauritius to succeed in the semi-finals within the males’s welterweight division on the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Photograph: Frank Franklin II/AP Photograph

Walsh saved that tempo into the second spherical, and though southpaw Clair got here extra into the bout with scoring pictures, it was the Irishman who impressed a lot of the judges. It was a slender second spherical, however three of the 5 judges noticed it in favour of Walsh, giving him the vital 2-0 lead he was searching for.

It was then desperation mode for the Mauritian, but it surely was Walsh who stepped up within the remaining stanza, with only one choose giving Clair the spherical. Walsh took the struggle 29-28, 28-29, 30-27, 30-27, 30-27 and strikes on to the semi-final the place he meets Britain’s Pat McCormack for the prize of an Olympic remaining.

“It’s unbelievable, it’s superb, it’s one thing that I dreamed of since I used to be no age,” stated Walsh.

“The identical as Paddy Barnes, Michael Conlan, Hugh Russell, I used to be speaking to Hugh Russell earlier than I got here out right here, and it’s superb now that I’m in the identical state of affairs that he was in. Clearly I wish to go additional. It’s actually, actually good.”

Walsh follows an extended, profitable custom by changing into the ninth Belfast boxer to win a medal on the Olympic Video games. “I’m getting shivers right here simply serious about it.”

The Irishman was additionally spoken to within the final spherical by the referee. However he caught to the type that has confirmed so efficient.

“He advised me to struggle. I’ve been getting that my complete life so I’ve, folks saying ‘struggle, struggle, struggle, hurry up and transfer’,” stated Walsh.

“I’ve at all times had that type of shifting. I’m simply now implementing extra stuff whereas I’m shifting that the coaches are displaying me, and I’m studying increasingly types and strategies and ways whereas on the transfer whereas earlier than I used to only transfer and not likely do as a lot.

“Now I’m rising as a fighter, I’m not simply occurring the transfer, I’m going backwards and going forwards and it’s nice.”

Earlier, Kellie Harrington got here by her first struggle in opposition to Italian southpaw Rebecca Nicoli. The Dublin World Champion from 2018 cleverly negotiated her approach by a tough three rounds in opposition to the devoted counter puncher.

Kellie Harrington in action against Italy’s Rebecca Nicoli. Photo: Buda Mendes/POOL/AFP via Getty Images
Kellie Harrington in motion in opposition to Italy’s Rebecca Nicoli. Photograph: Buda Mendes/POOL/AFP by way of Getty Photographs

In a cagey opening spherical Harrington saved her distance, scoring with the jab and the occasional mixture in opposition to an opponent who not often made an offensive transfer, preferring to attempt to rating off Harrington’s assaults.

But it surely was the Irish light-weight who landed the cleaner scoring blows with all 5 judges giving her the primary spherical. The identical choreography of sizing one another up continued into the second spherical, however Harrington once more fought with persistence and accuracy because the 5 judges favoured her for a 2-0 lead.

At that stage the Italian wanted a stoppage within the third spherical. However the way in which Harrington was boxing that was not a probability. Whereas the Chinese language choose went with Nicoli within the third spherical, the opposite 4 judges noticed Harrington because the unanimous winner.

“I really feel good. I really feel good to get began,” stated Harrington. “We arrived out right here the thirtieth June and now it’s the thirtieth July so we’re a month out right here.

“So it was good to get going at present and get entering into a great way. Completely happy days. I used to be simply getting anxious [to get started]. It’s an extended wait, it’s sticky, its heat, strolling across the village.

“I didn’t actually stroll round an excessive amount of to be trustworthy. You aren’t actually seeing an entire lot you’re seeing our condo and the meals corridor. I’m dwelling within the meals corridor and for a boxer to have the ability to say they’re dwelling within the meals corridor is one thing else. It is a nice journey, however this isn’t the vacation spot.

The Irish prime seed now meets Algeria’s Imane Khelifi on Tuesday August third in a quarter-final medal struggle.


After ready an additional 12 months to truly write this, athletics acquired below approach on the 2020 Olympics, and Thomas Barr discovered himself straight within the thick of it on the empty Olympic Stadium.

With the 400 metres hurdles more likely to be among the many most hotly contested occasions of the lot in right here over the following 9 days, Barr needed to produce one thing assured and assured in his warmth, which is precisely what he did – nailing second place behind current world file breaker Karsten Warholm of Norway.

Norway’s Karsten Warholm leads Thomas Barr. Photo: Bryan Keane/Inpho
Norway’s Karsten Warholm leads Thomas Barr. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho

That acquired Barr into Sunday’s semi-final, the place he’s once more drawn in opposition to Warholm, plus the highest American Benjamin Rai: solely the highest two, and two quickest losers, will progress to the ultimate.

“Good, sure good,” Barr stated, the Waterford athlete making the Rio remaining in 2016, ending fourth. “In my head, the goal was second place, that’s the place I used to be aiming for, knew I might form of get to.

“I might have carried out with a faster time, on the identical time I didn’t want it. I felt like I went out very relaxed, first 200, 250m. So relaxed that I ended up with quite a lot of power coming across the prime bend, and really near hurdle seven and eight, I needed to verify them a bit bit. However I knew by hurdle eight, I might simply see the German on my inside, knew I might catch him.”

Warholm, who ran 46.70 seconds a number of weeks in the past, was on his outdoors, and gained in 48.65, Barr second in 49.03. That ranked him eleventh quickest of the semi-final qualifiers and Barr is aware of a brand new lifetime greatest could also be wanted to make the ultimate.

“Coming down the house straight, I had hundreds left, I used to be like ‘do I stick on this place or go for second?’, and I like go for second, get myself a great lane, do what I must do. Ran 49-dead just about, so proud of the race.

“I don’t really feel too drained, the legs really feel good, and I’ve an entire time without work tomorrow to prepare once more. Positively, I felt very comfy, very relaxed, particularly down the backstraight. I used to be simply working off Warholm actually; he stated he was going to exit pretty simple, and his simple might be my fast. So I’d simply maintain onto him as greatest I can. He was nearly attempting to debate ways with me within the warm-up monitor, saying how would I’m going out, and I stated ‘I’ll simply maintain on to you.’”

Within the first ever working of the blended 4x400m relay on the Olympics, the Irish group of Sophie Becker, Phil Healy, Cillian Greene and Christopher O’Donnell reached the ultimate with a nationwide file time of three:12.88.

Greene acquired Eire off to an ideal begin with a powerful first leg earlier than passing over to Healy who briefly powered into the lead. Her handover to Becker for the third leg was seamless and left Eire in good place however a barely defective handover to O’Donnell for the ultimate leg threatened to carry Eire again.

Ireland’s Sophie Becker passes the baton to Christopher O’Donnell during the mixed 4x400m relay. Photo: Morgan Treacy/Inpho
Eire’s Sophie Becker passes the baton to Christopher O’Donnell through the blended 4x400m relay. Photograph: Morgan Treacy/Inpho

Nevertheless, the North Sligo man powered by the ultimate leg, consuming up the bottom to make it from fifth as much as fourth. With the highest three routinely qualifying for the ultimate, together with the 2 quickest losers from each heats, it seemed like Eire had been set for a nervous wait.

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