UCD swimmer Alex Murphy became only the sixth ever Irish competitor to take a medal at a European Short Course (25-metre) swimming championship when he shared the bronze medal in the men's 50m breaststroke in Netanya in Israel.
Murphy joins Olympians Andrew Bree, Sycerika McMahon, Grainne Murphy, Barry Murphy and Melanie Nocher as the other Irish swimmers to win a European Short course medal.
The 20-year-old came through the morning heats as the third fastest qualifier in a time of 26.51 seconds to advance to the last four.
In the second of the afternoon's semi-finals, Murphy was third behind Britain's Adam Peaty and Slovenian swimmer Damir Dugonjic in a time of 29.49 seconds, which was good enough for the Irish swimmer to make the final in the joint-third fastest time
Murphy then swam the race of his life in the final to set a new Irish-record time of 26.35 seconds, exactly the same time as Russian Oleg Costin.
The pair shared the bronze medal as Dugonjic (26.20) took gold ahead of Peaty by just one hundredth of a second.
“I’m very excited to get on the podium this evening," said Murphy. "I have trained and prepared for this chance but it’s still a real surprise when it happens. I’d like to thank everyone in swim Ireland and UCD Ad-Astra for their support”
Murhy returns to the pool for the 100m Breaststroke on Friday.
Shauna O’Brien will compete in her first race of the championships in the 50m Butterfly heats tomorrow. O’Brien is the current Irish Record holder in the event in 26.76 seconds.