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Ireland have high hopes of bringing home medals from the 2020 Olympics this summer and not all of them rest on Mr Chunky. That’s the horse equestrian rider Padraig McCarthy will hope to steer to at least an eventing bronze in Tokyo.
Thankfully Mr Chunky isn’t the only medal hope for the Irish this summer. Indeed, the Olympics betting odds are hotting up as we near the world’s most iconic sporting festival – and Ireland have some very real medal hopes.
The Irish won two silver medals at the 2016 Games and are yet to better the haul of six earned in 2012 in London. Can they return from Japan with gold, silver and bronze in the bag? Here, Paddy Power examines three viable medal hopes for the summer…
Men’s Lightweight Double Skulls
If Ireland are to win a gold medal at these Games it’s likely to come from these two. Paul O’Donovan and Fintan McCarthy have rowed together for years and were down to compete last summer before the Games were postponed 12 months. The pair were crowned lightweight double skulls world champions in Ottensheim in 2019 and backed up their domination of the event with a gold at the 2021 European Championships in April.
O’Donovan is three years older than McCarthy and actually has previous Olympic experience. Indeed, he won silver in this lightweight doubles event in 2016 with brother Gary O’Donovan.
Elsewhere in the rowing, Sanita Puspure is second-favourite to win the Women’s Single Skulls and could well claim a silver medal, while Ronan Byrne and Daire Lynch are pitched in the Men’s Double Skulls as second-favourites also.
There are few more feared boxers heading to Tokyo this summer than Kellie Harrington. The Dublin native edged Great Britain’s Caroline Dubois in a split decision to win gold at a Tokyo Olympics European qualifier event earlier this year and book her spot on the plane to Japan.
Harrington boasts a handful of European medals and won her first World Championships gold in 2018 in New Delhi. She fought at Lightweight that year and has also claimed a European Games silver medal since. Harrington is currently ranked sixth in the world and could well be on for a bronze or better this summer.
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