Coyne edged out of Euro medal places

by Gazette Reporter

Niamh Coyne came agonisingly close to a medal in the 100m Breaststroke on the final night of racing at the European Junior Swimming Championships in Helsinki, Finland last week.

The National Centre Dublin swimmer had progressed across heats and semi-finals in second place, swimming a lifetime best in the semi-final of 1.08.56.

In the final, the 17-year-old swam her second fastest time in the event ever to come within five hundredths of a second of a medal; Germany’s Elena Brandt getting her finger to the wall in 1.08.68, just ahead of Coyne’s 1:08.73.

Lithuania’s Kotryna Teterevkova claimed the gold medal in 1:08.03 with Russia’s Anastasia Makarova in the silver in 1.08.46.

Coyne returns to action at the Irish Summer Nations at the end of July and is one of four swimmers nominated to the Olympic Council of Ireland for selection to the World Youth Olympics Team in Argentina in October.

Also in action was Robbie Powell raced the 50m Freestyle Semi-Final. The Athlone swimmer bettered his time from this morning touching in 23.30 to place 13th overall.

Speaking at the conclusion of the event, team leader Andy Reid commented: “The European Junior Championships always provides our up and coming athletes a very real taste of international swimming ahead of what is hoped to be a successful senior international career.

“As in recent years, the standards have been exceptionally high and yet our young team has achieved much and learnt even more.

“We return from Helsinki with ten individual swims seeing us progress into semi-finals or finals, a relay final and three Irish Junior Records.

“The staff are very proud of the teams’ professional approach to racing and how they have presented themselves in the arena and we look forward to working with their home programme coaches to ensure even further progress next season.”

Next up for Team Ireland will be Glasgow 2018 where 12 swimmers and three divers will compete at the European Championships from August 3 to 10.

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