Irish trio knocked out of semis in Helsinki30/06/2012 - 14:44:23
Three Irish Championship debutants were shown the harsh realities of stepping up to a senior international Games in this morning’s action at the European Athletics Championships in Helsinki.
Ciara Mageean, Orla Drumm and Paul Robinson all bowed out at the semi-final stage of their respective events, but all were content they learned a lot about competing on Europe’s biggest stage.
Mageean (UCD AC) and Drumm (UCC AC) both finished twelfth in their semi-finals of the women’s 1500 metres, having held on with the pack until the bell, with the duo running similar times – Mageean’s 4:19.23 edged Drumm’s 4:19.61.
Having won medals at four international underage championships – world youth silver in 2009, European Youth Olympics gold 2009, plus world and European junior silvers last year – Mageean feels while the step-up to adult championships is a huge one, she’s getting there.
The 20-year-old said: “I’ve had good underage championships so that’s always been a credit to me. It’s a step-up now and I felt I was ready for it today but it wasn’t there.
“I want to make sure I’m a good adult athlete not just a good underage athlete. There’s still a wee bit to go. I didn’t perform the way I wanted to - I’ll learn from this.”
Kildare’s Paul Robinson of St Coca’s AC finished a creditable ninth in his 1500m semi-final, staying in contention for all but the final injection of pace in the closing 200 metres.
The 21-year-old’s time of 3:47.26 was eight seconds outside his personal best set three weeks ago in Watford, as flying Finn Niclas Sandells took the honours in 3:45.74.
Ben Reynolds of North Down AC made his championship debut at the World Indoors in Istanbul in March, but suffered upset himself this lunchtime due a pelvic injury that forced his withdrawal from the 110m hurdles heats.
Reynolds said on Twitter: “Unfortunately had to pull out of Euro Champs. Injury concerns. Sometimes, you gotta step back, before you can leap forward,” adding he didn’t want the make the slight injury any worse.
As well as 4x400 relay semi-finals for Irish men’s and women’s teams, there are four Irish finalists in action tonight, with Stephanie Reilly of Sli Chulainn in Wicklow lining up for the women’s 3000m steeplechase final at 5:55pm Irish time.
Mark Kenneally and David Rooney compete in the 10,000m final at 7:00, followed by Paul Hession in the 200m decider at 8:20.
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