Egan battles to fifth in Worlds

JENNY Egan again turned in a tenacious performance as she finished up fifth in the Canoe Marathon World Championships at Vila de Prado in Portugal.

With a little more luck she might well have been a lot closer, if not in among the medals, as she had been in this very event last year when her bronze marked the first time an Irish female athlete had made the podium in the competition.

Jenny Egan World Marathon

And she made a very promising start this time around, leading off the race, only to be reeled in on the first portage.

It meant she was playing catch-up with the lead group, yet she dug deep and worked her way back in among the medal contenders.

Yet just when it looked as if she might again make the podium, she was delayed on the final portage, costing her valuable seconds in a very close contest.

She had to settle for fifth place behind Anna Koszikova of the Czech Republic in fourth, Spain’s Eva Barrios (third) and Hungarian pair Sára Mihalik (second) and Vanda Kiszli (first).

“I made a great start to the race, but when I got to the first portage, my legs felt really heavy and dead. I had nothing,” recalled Egan.

“But I caught back up with the lead group about three times and coming into the final portage which was about 1500m from the finish line there were seven boats battling for the medals.

“It was very exciting, but on the final portage, Kristina Bedec, a Serbian, filled her boat getting out and turned it sideways, blocking the portage. I had to go around her and I lost a few seconds that cost me probably fourth place.

“But it was that first portage that cost me the race.

“Still I was very happy with fifth place. I was 43 seconds off gold and 29 off bronze after 26.2 km of racing,” she told The Echo.

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