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Paralympics: Barry McClements makes first Games final as Claire Taggart turns sights to team event

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2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games Monday - Swimming, Tokyo Aquatic Centre, Tokyo, Japan 30/8/2021 Men's S9 100M Breaststroke Final Ireland's Barry McClements on after finishing 7th Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games Monday - Swimming, Tokyo Aquatic Centre, Tokyo, Japan 30/8/2021 Men's S9 100M Breaststroke Final Ireland's Barry McClements on after finishing 7th Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games Monday - Swimming, Tokyo Aquatic Centre, Tokyo, Japan 30/8/2021 Men's S9 100M Breaststroke Final Ireland's Barry McClements on after finishing 7th Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games Monday - Swimming, Tokyo Aquatic Centre, Tokyo, Japan 30/8/2021 Men's S9 100M Breaststroke Final Ireland's Barry McClements on after finishing 7th Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games Monday - Swimming, Tokyo Aquatic Centre, Tokyo, Japan 30/8/2021 Men's S9 100M Breaststroke Final Ireland's Barry McClements on the way to finishing 7th Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games Monday - Swimming, Tokyo Aquatic Centre, Tokyo, Japan 30/8/2021 Men's S9 100M Breaststroke Final Ireland's Barry McClements on the way to finishing 7th Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

Claire Taggart in action at the Paralympic Games.

Claire Taggart in action at the Paralympic Games.

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2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games Monday - Swimming, Tokyo Aquatic Centre, Tokyo, Japan 30/8/2021 Men's S9 100M Breaststroke Final Ireland's Barry McClements on after finishing 7th Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson

Barry McClements finished seventh in the S9 men’s 100m backstroke with a personal best time on Monday after making it through to his first Paralympic Games final.

There are high hopes that the 19-year-old has a bright future in paralympic swimming and he gained significant experience by grabbing the last final spot by 0.39 seconds, finishing fourth in his heat.

The Newtownards SC star would even go on to improve on that position in the final, clocking a time of 1:05.76 to beat three-time paralympic gold medallist Brenden Hall into seventh.

The gold was won by Bogdan Mozgovoi of the Russian Paralympic Committee, edging Belarusian rival Yahor Shchalkanau by 0.01 seconds in a thrilling finish.

McClements had missed out on a place in the S9 men’s 400m freestyle final by less than a second in his opening swim last week but still has two more events to compete in. Next up is the SM9 200m medley on Wednesday, followed by the S9 100m butterfly on Friday.

Meanwhile, boccia player Claire Taggart is turning her attention to the team event after exiting the individuals in the pool stage on Monday morning after an 8-1 defeat to Brazilian Maciel Santos.

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Claire Taggart in action at the Paralympic Games.

Claire Taggart in action at the Paralympic Games.

Claire Taggart in action at the Paralympic Games.

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Taggart will be back in action as part of Team GB’s BC1/BC2 Team on Friday.

“It was a very tactical game but the better player won,” she said. “I wasn’t up to scratch today. I’m very disappointed not to progress through the pool but I’ve got some time now to regroup and do some training before we start the group team events on Thursday.”

In wheelchair basketball, James MacSorley was in action as Team GB edged Australia 70-69 in a cracking game to top their group ahead of Wednesday’s quarter-finals, in which they’ll face Canada at 10.15am. 

Dungannon shooter Phil Eaglesham finished 14th of 29 competitors in the R4 10m mixed air rifle event, missing out on a final spot by six places and 4.8 points.

He'll be back in action in Tuesday's R5 mixed 10m air rifle prone competition and will also compete in the R9 50m mixed rifle prone event on Saturday.


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