Mona McSharry claimed her second European Title and third medal in five days at the European Junior Swimming Championships in Netanya, Israel today with an outstanding win in the 100m Breaststroke Final.
The Gold medal was never in doubt for the 17-year-old as she stormed to victory with over a second to spare on the Netherlands Tes Schouten (1:09.03) in 1 minute 07.61 seconds, in fact, no other swimmer broke 1:09 in the race. McSharry adds the title to 50m Breaststroke Gold on Wednesday and 200m Breaststroke Silver on Friday. The Marlins swimmer set two new Irish Senior and Junior Records in those events as well as Irish Junior Records with the 400m Mixed Medley Relay who finished fourth in yesterday’s Final.
“I am delighted to finish off a successful meet with a gold medal in my main event” commented McSharry after the win “There are a few things now that I can work on when I get back to training to help me swim faster at World Junior Championships.”
McSharry now becomes Ireland’s most decorated European Junior medallist with two Gold and a Silver medal at this event and silver and bronze from the 2016 edition. Irelands only other medallists at European Junior level are Conor Ferguson (Silver 2016, Silver 2017), Grainne Murphy in 2009 (3 x Gold, 1 x Bronze) and Sycerika McMahon in 2009/2011 (2 x Gold, 1 x silver, 1 Bronze).
This week has been one of Ireland’s most successful European Junior Championships with a total of four medals, two Gold and two silver including McSharry’s medals and silver from Conor Ferguson in the 50m Backstroke last night. The team set five junior and 2 senior Irish records as well as competing in five finals and seven semi-finals.
Speaking at the conclusion of the event head coach Andy Reid commented “The coaching team are delighted with the attitude and approach of the whole team and this created a very positive and successful experience for everyone. The athletes exhibited the values set out in our Swim Ireland Team Charter and this provides a strong platform for improved performances at their next target competition.”
Next up for medallists McSharry and Ferguson is the World Championships in Budapest in July. The duo then lead a team including European Junior team mates Jack McMillan, Ellen Walshe and Niamh Coyne at the World Junior Championships in Indianapolis in August.
The team arrives home to Dublin airport (T1) at 3.30pm tomorrow.
Day 5 Heats/Final Results:
Women 100m Breaststroke
Mona McSharry H 1:08.00 (1st) SF 1:07.81 (1st) F 1:07.61 (1st)
1st Mona McSharry Ireland 1:07.61 2nd T Shouten Netherlands 1:09.03 3rd H Brunzell Sweden 1:09.59
Men 50m Freestyle
Robbie Powell H 23.94 (31st)
Women 50m Butterfly
Ellen Walshe H 28.89 (50th)