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Gold and silver for Ireland but O'Donovan brothers fall short in World Cup final

Skibbereen clubmates Mark O’Donovan, Shane O’Driscoll and Denise Walsh stole the limelight from Gary and Paul O’Donovan in Belgrade.

MARK O’DONOVAN AND Shane O’Driscoll stormed to gold at the World Cup regatta in Belgrade today, while Denise Walsh claimed silver in the lightweight women’s single sculls final.

Mark O'Donovan and Shane O'Driscoll celebrate winning gold O'Donovan and O'Driscoll won gold. Source: Srdjan Stevanovic/INPHO

There was to be no luck for Olympic silver medallists and their Skibbereen clubmates, Paul and Gary O’Donovan however, as they just missed out on the medal positions to finish fourth in a very competitive final.

O’Donovan and O’Driscoll were the first of the Irish contingent to race, as they charged into the lead before the halfway point to finish first out of four teams.

They recorded a time of 6:46.650, ahead of Russia and Great Britain, who finished second and third respectively.

Denise Walsh celebrates winning silver Denise Walsh celebrates with silver. Source: Srdjan Stevanovic/INPHO

Also from the Skibbereen club, Denise Walsh battled back from fifth in the closing stages in emphatic fashion to nail down second place.

She finished just four seconds behind the winner, Switzerland’s Patricia Merz.

Ireland’s Olympic stars, the O’Donovan brothers, had to allow their clubmates take the limelight as they were edged to fourth place in the lightweight men’s double sculls final.

There was just a second and a half between themselves and the winning Great Britain team of Peter Chambers and Will Fletcher, as the Cork duo registered a time of 6:27.120.

Gary O'Donovan and Paul O'Donovan The O'Donovan brothers had to settle for fourth. Source: Srdjan Stevanovic/INPHO

There was half a second between the O’Donovans and a bronze medal.

Fell0w Rio Olympian Sanita Puspure rows in the women’s single sculls final shortly [12.30pm Irish time].

The races in Belgrade are the first of three World Cup events, and the overall winners will be crowned after further regattas in Switzerland and Poland over the next two months.

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Emma Duffy

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