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Leon Reid through to 200m semi-finals but disappointment for Marcus Lawler

The two Irish sprinters were out in the 200m heats this morning.

Leon Reid.
Leon Reid.
Image: Bryan Keane/INPHO

THERE WAS MIXED fortunes for the Irish pair of Marcus Lawler and Leon Reid in the men’s 200m heats this morning. 

The two Irish sprinters both took to the track at the Japan National Stadium, with Lawler falling short of qualifying for the semi-finals, while Reid just did enough to scrape through. 

Lawler, running from lane seven, clocked a season’s best time of 20.73 on his Olympic debut as he came in sixth in heat six, missing out on the fastest qualifier spots.

Kenneth Bednarik of the USA won the heat at 20.01, with Yancarlos Martinez of the Dominican Republic second at 20.17 and Italy’s Eseosa Fostine Dasalu third at 20.29.

“I knew that was going to require a 20.5, and I’m capable of 20.5 but it was just shy of that,” Lawler said. 

“I’ve enjoyed every last minute of it and that’s what I really wanted to do. Come out and enjoy it, relax, and run free without being tense and hopefully, I achieved that.”

In heat seven Reid also ran a season’s best time, coming in at 20.53 seconds to finish fifth in a strong field, his time just enough to see him advance to the semi-finals, which take place later today.

The heat was won by the USA’s Noah Lyles at 20.18. Sibusiso Matsenjwa of Eswatini was second at 20.34 with Joseph Paul Amoah of Ghana third at 20.35.

“I like to achieve high, it might not be enough but I’ll give it a good lash in the semis,” Reid said.

“You want to give up when everyone is going past you, it’s hard to try and hold on, and you’ve got to hold on and see it through to the line. I did it at the Commonwealth (Games) and I did it here, and we’re into the semis.”

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Updated at 7.11am to include reaction from Marcus Lawler and Leon Reid.

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Ciarán Kennedy

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