Irish Olympic silver medallist Paul O’Donovan stormed into the semi-finals of the World Championship lightweight single sculls, claiming a convincing victory in his quarter-final in Florida.

O’Donovan, who is defending the title he won at last year's Championship, dominated the race and forced Germany’s Lars Wichert into second with Luka Radonic of Croatia finishing third and taking the final qualifying place.

The Cork rower made his trademark relaxed start and was back in fourth place by the 500m mark but had improved to second by the half-way stage, less than half a second behind Wichert.

O’Donovan then turned up the heat on the German, powering to the fore with just under 800m to go and he pulled away in the closing stages to finish in an impressive time of 6:56.990 with Wichert over five seconds behind. 

Sanita Puspure joins O'Donovan in the semi-finals after she won her single sculls repechage quarter-final, booking her place in the A/B semi-final.

Puspure took the win in a time of 7:36.16 and turned in a powerful display, leading from start to finish before taking top spot by almost ten second from second place Lucie Zabova of the Czech Republic.

There was disappointment for Aileen Crowley and Aifric Keogh in the women's pair repechage however as they finished a distant fourth in their race and missed out on a top-two qualifying place.

Tomorrow, Paul O' Donovan and Denise Walsh compete in their respective A/B semifinals (men's/women's lightweight single sculls) at 15:11 and 15:41 Irish time.

For both, a top three finish will put them through to the A finals. RTÉ coverage begins at 3pm.

Women's pair, Repechage 1: 1. Great Britain 7:25.99, 2. Germany 7:32.34, 3. China 7:39.34, 4. Ireland (A Keogh, A Crowley) 7:41.13, 5. Mexico 7:43.65

Women's single sculls, Repechage 1: Ireland (S Puspure) 7:36.16, 2. Czech Republic 7:45.98, 3. Norway 7:56.03, 4. Ukraine 8:03.98

Lightweight men's single sculls, Quarterfinal 3: 1. Ireland (P O'Donovan) 6:56.99, 2. Germany 7:01.74, 3. Croatia 7:04.54, 4. Czech Republic 7:08.13, 5. Turkey 7:11.31, 6. Guatemala 7:32.17