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Ireland duo through to final

Ciaran O'Lionaird and Paul Robinson qualified for the final of the 1,500 metres at the European Championships on Friday.

O'Lionaird recorded a time of three minutes 39.79 seconds to advance, while Robinson clocked three mins 39.83secs.

However, Ireland saw strong medal chances extinguished in downtown Zurich.

Robert Heffernan was looking to add the European crown to last year's World Championships triumph in the 50km race walk.

The Irish team captain looked to be in the medal hunt at the halfway point, but soon began to drop off the pace.

Heffernan was clearly battling with a knock and, having stopped briefly to stretch, withdrew just before the 40km mark.

He showed his class at the finish line, though, by going to congratulate France's Yohann Diniz for setting a new world record of three hours 32 minutes and 33 seconds.

Brendan Boyce was never going to challenge the leading pack, but set a new personal best as he finished 16th in 3:51:34.

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