Ireland's Daniel Wiffen broke the Irish national record in a time of 7:51.65 to win his men's 800m freestyle heat at Tokyo 2020.

The 20-year-old distance swimmer was seventh a quarter of the way through his heat before powering into the lead, finishing 0.42 seconds ahead of Venezuela's Alfonso Mestre.

But with the eight fastest swimmers from the five heats qualifying for the final, Wiffen missed out on progressing, ranking 14th overall.

Starting in Lane 8, he moved up into the top three in his heat by the halfway point, before surging to the front with a split time of 27.86 in his final 50m as he finished strongly.

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Speaking to RTÉ Sport, Wiffen said he had taken inspiration from Team Ireland team-mate Jack McMillan's performance earlier in the pool.

"I was hurting a lot down the first 400 and I kind of got into my rhythm in the second half which was good," he said, adding that "I knew I'd win the last 15 metres".

"I took inspiration from Jack McMillan who just swam and did a P and an A time in the 200-free."

Wiffen, who will turn his attention to the 1500m on Friday, added that he feels Irish swimming is on the crest of a wave.

"We've got so many world class athletes in the Irish team and I'm glad to be a part of it," he said.

Meanwhile, Ireland missed out on qualification for the Men's 4x200m freestyle relay final after finishing eighth in Tuesday's second heat.

The team consisting of Jack McMillan, Finn McGeever, Brendan Hyland and Shane Ryan started strongly before fading towards the end as they finished in a time of in 7:15.48 which left Ireland ranked 15th of 16 overall after Hungary's disqualification during Heat 1.

They were 12.23 seconds adrift of Great Britain's quartet who won the heat, ahead of Australia and the United States.

Brendan Hyland, Finn McGeever, Jack McMillan and Shane Ryan following the heats

Starting in Lane 8, McMillan had propelled the Irish quartet into fourth by the end of his opening 200m stint in a time of 1:46.66.

McGeever followed for the second stint but slipped back to seventh by the halfway point of his swim, before Hyland kept the Irish quartet in the top seven during the third leg.

Ryan, who had withdrawn from the 100m backstroke last Friday due to injury, took to the water for the final stint but was overtaken by South Korea's Hojoon Lee with 50m to go as the first Irish relay team to qualify for an Olympics finished eighth.

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Speaking to RTÉ Sport, McMillan said the Irish quartet had made history and paid tribute to fellow Irish swimmers Jordan Sloan and Gerry Quinn, who had been part of the qualification process.

"It was just class to swim with the boys and come together as a relay," he said.

"We've made history so shout out to Jordan and Gerry because we wouldn't be here without them. Hopefully we did them proud and it was great to have the experience with the boys."

McGeever added of the sense of occasion: "It was crazy, most insane race I've ever swam. I was so blown away by it. It's massive, coolest thing I've ever done."

Earlier, Darragh Greene finished 23rd overall in men's 200m breaststroke heats in 2:11.09.

The Co Longford swimmer was in Heat 5 of the event and after setting the quickest reaction time of the seven competitors, Greene moved up to fifth in Lane 8 by the end of the opening 50m.

The Newtownforbes native, who had taken part in the 100m breaststroke on Saturday, slipped back to seventh by the final 50m, finishing 2.61 seconds behind heat winner Nic Fink of the United States.

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"It's been unbelievable," Greene told RTÉ Sport of his overall Olympic experience.

"It's great to be representing Ireland as well at the Olympics, at the highest you can be, so it's phenomenal."

Greene also spoke of his pride at representing both his county and hometown at the highest level.

"I'm from Newtownforbes in Co Longforfd, so it's phenomenal to be able to come out of that and show the younger generation that you can do anything you put your mind to."

Follow all the action from Tokyo 2020 with our 24-hour coverage on RTÉ.ie/sport and the RTÉ News app, watch live on RTÉ2 or RTÉ Player and listen to updates and live commentaries on RTÉ Radio.

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