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Modern pentathlon silver for Irish
24 Mar 2015 09:09
After their modern pentathlon silver medal in the mixed relay event at the Sarasota World Cup in Florida last month, Irish Olympians Natalya Coyle and Arthur Lanigan-O’Keeffe have made it two in a row by winning the silver medal in the Cairo World Cup on Monday. Ireland scored 27 victories in fencing to get off to a great start and finished in fifth place. The Irish duo then swam a second faster than their time in Sarasota to win the swim in a time of 1:57.70 and moved up into third place overall. Both Coyle and Lanigan-O'Keeffe rode clear and came second in the ride with only two time faults. This meant that the pair started the run/shoot combined event in first place.
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However second place was only one second behind, and third place only five seconds behind, so the pair knew they had a real race on their hands to secure a medal. Coyle had a great race and handed over to Lanigan-O'Keeffe in first place. Going into the last shooting series Lanigan-O'Keeffe was just in the lead, but a few missed shots meant that he left the range for the final 800m at the same time with Hernandez from Mexico. The final 800m was a great race, but unfortunately Hernandez, who didn’t compete in the men’s individual final yesterday, had fresher legs and just beat the Irishman in a sprint finish. Only four meters separated the two athletes. Mexico won gold, Ireland silver and Hungary took the bronze medal. Andy Mackenzie, acting performance director for the Irish team, was very impressed with the Irish athletes: “Natalya and Arthur have shown that they are truly world class with this back-to-back podium finish. No other team has managed to achieve this so far in 2015." Lanigan-O’Keeffe said: “I'm delighted with the back-to-back silver medal. Natalya and I make a great team. I was very tired after yesterday's men’s finals, but it just goes to prove that the mind is stronger that the body.” The duo move on to Rome in two weeks for World Cup 3 in the hunt for more silverware.
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