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Rising star Conor Ferguson scoops European Youth Olympics silver

By David Kelly

Rising teenage star Conor Ferguson once again demonstrated his huge potential when he landed a silver medal at the European Youth Olympics in Tbilisi, Georgia.

Ferguson, a gold medal winner at the Canadian Age Group championships last summer, stepped on to the blocks yesterday and delivered a superb performance, winning silver in the 100m backstroke with a time of 56.44.

The 16-year-old held off Poland's Kacper Stokowski who took bronze in 56.97, while Spain's Hugo De Oliveira took gold in 55.78 seconds.

Tallaght and Swim Ireland Performance Centre swimmer Antoinette Neamt also picked up a medal on a great day for the Irish squad.

The 14 year old clocked 8:47.12 to win bronze in the 800m freestyle, just 0.13 behind silver medallist Petra Barocsai of Hungary.

Gold went to Barocsai's team mate Ajna Kesely in 8:44.72.

The two medals are the first major international championship junior medals for Neamt and Ferguson. Both are also ranked in the top three in their final events this week, the girls' 400m freestyle and boys' 200m backstroke.

Ireland's mixed medley relay of Ferguson, Niamh Coyne, Ellen Walshe and Robert Powell combined to make the final in eighth place with 4:08.85.

The quartet went on to smash that time in the final, finishing fourth in a new Irish record of 4:04.44.

Rebecca Reid of Ards won her 100m freestyle heat before going on to place 14th overall after the semi-finals with a time of 59.66.

In the 400m freestyle, Bangor's Jack McMillan touched in 4:12.89.

Belfast Telegraph


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