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Brilliant news for Ireland's Natalya Coyle as she receives Olympics boost

The modern pentathlete has retrospectively been awarded a sixth-place finish at the Rio Games.

Ireland's Natalya Coyle celebrates her finish at the Rio Olympics.
Ireland's Natalya Coyle celebrates her finish at the Rio Olympics.
Image: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

THERE WAS EXCELLENT news for Ireland’s Natalya Coyle today, as it was confirmed that she had retrospectively been awarded a sixth-place finish at the Rio Olympics.

The modern pentathlete tweeted her delight after she moved up a spot following her original seventh-place finish in the women’s individual event, although she added on Twitter that the feeling was “bittersweet,” after China’s Chen Qian failed a doping test and consequently saw her fourth-place result in Rio chalked off.

It completes a brilliant few days for Coyle, who took gold along with fellow Irish athlete Arthur Lanigan O’Keeffe in the mixed relay event at the International Modern Pentathlon Union (UIPM) World Cup IV in Poland on Monday.

The 26-year-old is not the first Irish athlete to be moved up in status following another athlete’s failed dope test. Cork walker Rob Heffernan belatedly received a bronze medal for his performance at the London 2012 Olympics, while in other events outside of the Games, Olive Loughnane and Derval O’Rourke have been among the beneficiaries.

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