Olympics: Daniel Wiffen claims Irish record winning 800m Freestyle heat

Olympics: Daniel Wiffen Claims Irish Record Winning 800M Freestyle Heat
Daniel Wiffen powered through the last 100m to take the top spot in his 800m Freestyle heat. Photo: INPHO/Morgan Treacy
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Muireann Duffy

Updated: 1pm

Team Ireland was represented in four swimming events today, with Daniel Wiffen the last in action.

Wiffen had an immense finish in his Men's 800m Freestyle heat to take the top spot. With faster heats still to come, the Co Down swimmer may not make the finals, with just eight progressing, however, a new Irish senior record will be a solid consolation.

Earlier, Mona McSharry claimed an eighth place finish the Women's 100m Breaststroke final after becoming to first Irish swimmer in 25 years to take a spot in an Olympic final event.

The Sligo woman put in a time of 1:06.94, slightly outside her semi-final time of 1:06.59.

Speaking after the race, McSharry said: "It’s amazing, thinking about it like that, that there hasn’t been anyone else who has done this in 25 years, I think it puts it into perspective. For me, racing in it is just another final - but it really is a lot more than that. It makes me feel so proud that I made it there."


In the 4 x 200m Men's Freestyle relay, Ireland finished 15th overall after placing eighth in their heat. The four became the first ever Irish men's swimming relay team, made up of Shane Ryan, Brendan Hyland, Finn McKeever and Jack McMillan, who set a new 200m Irish record in the process.

In the 200m Breaststroke, Darragh Greene finished seventh in his heat with a time of 2:11.09.


Two Olympic debutants for Team Ireland got off to a flying start in the Men's 49er Skiff event.

Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove took first place in the opening race, seeing off the pairings of Team GB and Germany.

After the race was abandoned due to shifting winds, the course was reset allowing the completion of the first of the 12 stages.

Racing will resume tomorrow having been cancelled for the remainder of the day.

Annalise Murphy also had a good day, taking her best finish so far in Race 5 of 10 in the Laser Radial event.


Murphy came home in ninth, marking her first top 10 finish in Tokyo. Race 6 followed shortly afterwards, with Murphy claiming 10th, moving her up to 20th overall.

Rugby Sevens

Elsewhere, the Irish Rugby Sevens team got the win they needed over Kenya, however, the winning margin was not enough to see them through to the quarter-final stages.

Their first win of the Games came after two losses on Monday to the USA and South Africa, with tries from Hugo Lennox and Harry McNulty putting Ireland ahead in the first half, however a Kenyan converted try in the closing minute closed the game out 12-7.

Try-scorer McNulty felt the team should have won the game "by a whole lot more", adding: "Realistically, if we had played at our best the last two days I think we would have been well and truly in there and have a really good shot at putting ourselves up for some sort of medal."

The boys have since beaten the Republic of Korea 31-0, earning them a spot in the ninth-place play-off, where they will once again face Kenya on Wednesday.


Carolyn Hayes put in a mammoth performance to finish 23rd in the Women's Individual Triathlon after the race was delayed due to challenging weather conditions.

Hayes posted a time of 2:02.10 after clocking the 10th fastest time in the 10km run, having clawed back from 41st after the swim.

Finishing six minutes behind the winner, Bermuda's Flora Duffy who claimed the country's first-ever gold medal, and just four seconds behind the athlete ahead, Hayes said she was "happy enough" with her performance.


There was joy in the ring, with Men's Welterweight Aidan Walsh bagging a win for Team Ireland against Albert Mengue Ayissi of Cameroon.

The unanimous win for the Belfast man means he now advances to the quarter-finals.

"It’s amazing to get the first one out of the way and focus on the next one," Walsh said after the fight.

"I just listened to the coaches’ advice and did what they were telling me. My strategy going into it was to keep it long, keep the basics and to do what the coaches said.

"They always have the best advice and you just have to put your trust in them and listen to the advice that’s given to you. But keep it simple, and what’s worked for me and got me here," he added.

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