None Donal O’Neill and Aisling Cooney both missed out narrowly in qualifying for the semi-finals of their respective events today at the LEN Short Course European Swimming Championships in Istanbul.
29-year old Donal O’Neill recorded his third individual Irish record of the week this morning, swimming in the100m backstroke heats and finishing in a new Irish record time of 52.98 – an impressive .45 sec quicker than the previous mark that he set just 4 weeks ago at the Berlin World Cup. O’Neill, who has recently come out of a 4-year retirement from swimming, was 5 places away from qualifying for tonight’s semi-final,
Also close to qualifying for a second swim was Dubliner Aisling Cooney, when she clocked 28.27 – new Irish record time – in the 50m backstroke heats. Her finishing time left her 3 places shy of the time needed to qualify for the semi-final.
Speaking after today’s results in Istanbul, Peter Banks Swim Ireland National Performance Director commented “Another good day of swimming and 3 new Irish records. We’re moving in the right direction but we’re not quite there yet. We were so close to making the semi-finals today, with Donal and Aisling but we are going to look ahead to tomorrow now, where we’ve got the final day of competition and everyone is competing.”
Other swimmers in action today were: Grainne Murphy, Nuala Murphy and Niamh O’Sullivan in the 400m freestyle. Grainne’s time of 4.12.97 lowered the previous Irish Junior record (set by Sycerika Mcahon at the Irish short course National Championships 3 weeks ago). Ards man Michael Dawson featured in the Men’s 50m breaststroke, finishing in 28.40.
Day 3 Results:
Aisling Cooney 28.27 50m Backstroke *IRISH SENIOR RECORD
Michael Dawson 28.40 50m Breaststroke
Grainne Murphy 4:12.97 400m Freestyle *IRISH JUNIOR RECORD
Nuala Murphy 4:17.20, 400m Freestyle
Niamh O’Sullivan 4:13.36 400m Freestyle
Donal O Neill 100m 52.98 Backstroke *IRISH SENIOR RECORD
Issued by Swim Ireland, whose High Performance Programme is supported and funded by the Irish Sports Council]
Chantal Gibney, Swim Ireland
Ph: +353 86 3817933
Email: [email protected]