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Ireland

Heroes’ welcome: Team Ireland rowing medallists return from Tokyo

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Six of Ireland’s Olympic medallists have returned from Tokyo, met at Dublin Airport with a warm welcome from their families.

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Fintan McCarthy and Paul O’Donovan brought back the first gold medals for Ireland since Katie Taylor in 2012, after their winning performance in the Men’s Double Sculls on Thursday.

Emily Hegarty, Fiona Murtagh, Eimear Lambe and Aifric Keogh return home with their four bronze medals from Tokyo. Credit: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo

Ireland also took bronze in the Women’s Fours, with Eimear Lambe, Fiona Murtagh, Aifric Keogh and Emily Hegarty reaping the rewards of their hard work.

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While their families were first to greet them at the airport, the west Cork town of Skibbereen will also be eagerly awaiting the return of McCarthy and O’Donovan, who both represent the local rowing club.

When the pair crossed the line in Thursday’s final, becoming the first Irish men to claim gold for Team Ireland since Michael Carruth in 1992, Skibbereen Rowing Club chairperson Violet Hayes said : “The shouts could be heard, if not in Dublin, at least in Cork.”

Homecoming celebrations for all Team Ireland’s athletes will be much changed from previous Olympics due to Covid-19 and restrictions on large gatherings.

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