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Watkins and Egan set 'top 10' target Wolfhounds lick wounds after Lionhearts defeat Might of Malaysians to test mettle of home guard O'Boyle's best as Irish make way in the Worlds Kinsella key if Wildwater are to rule roost in Athy Rheinisch rues ending Euros as a gate crasher

CANOEING (SPRINT): Barry Watkins and Jenny Egan are both aiming for top 10 placings at the World Kayak-Canoe Sprint Championships in Poznan, Poland this weekend.

First up is Watkins who hopes to progress to the semi-finals of the K1 1000m with a good run in the heats. Watkins, trained by Brendan Maloney of DCU, has had a string of solid performances this season, including a seventh in the 500m at the European Championships in Spain a few weeks ago. The 2007 European Junior 500m champion is training up to 18 times a week.

Jenny Egan took a silver medal in the 5000m at the World Cup in Szeged, Hungary -- a first for any female Irish paddler -- and hopes to go one better on Saturday. More than 700 canoeists from 83 nations will compete in Poznan.



Killylough pull their weight to take 580kg title

TUG OF WAR: Killylough from Co Monaghan defeated Gortletteragh from Co Leitrim for the senior 580kg title at the concluding National Championship round at Tullow, Co Carlow. Boley from Co Wexford were third. Taking the novice 600kg title was Killoughey from Co Offaly.

Clonmines from Co Wexford won the overall youth 6-a-side league from Meath team Mountain View. With the club season over, the national squad now turn their attention to preparing for next month's World Championships in Pretoria, South Africa.



Wolfhounds lick wounds after Lionhearts defeat

RUGBY LEAGUE: In the final match of the Four Nations Rugby League Championships, the Irish Wolfhounds were outclassed by the English Lionhearts, conceding eight tries.

Although the Wolfhounds started brightly, it was the English side that scored first and then maintained the pressure, going into the break with a 22-0 advantage. As the match continued, Ireland had their chances and finally got their name on the scoreboard with two excellent tries. At the final whistle, the score stood at 44-12.



Might of Malaysians to test mettle of home guard

HOCKEY: Ireland's men's hockey team began a four-match series against Malaysia last night at UCD. This will continue with matches this evening (8.0) and also on Saturday and Sunday.

After a long break, the squad returned to training last weekend and will next play a Five Nations Tournament in Paris. Malaysia is using the matches as a warm- up for the upcoming Commonwealth and Asian Games.



O'Boyle's best as Irish make way in the Worlds

ORIENTEERING: Niamh O'Boyle produced the best result of the Irish team at the World Championships in Trondheim, Norway when she finished 34th in the classic long-distance final. In the men's classic final, Nick Simonin had a strong run to finish 39th. In a best-ever championships for the Irish, David Healy made the middle distance final, where he finished 43rd, while Simonin also made the spring final, finishing 41st. Competition ended with the relays, where the Irish men finished 23rd and the women 24th.



Kinsella key if Wildwater are to rule roost in Athy

CANOE POLO: Wildwater Kayak Club are slight favourites to add another title to their collection at this weekend's Irish Canoe Polo Club Championships in Athy.

At the Galway Open, the Glenmaroon-based club beat Kilcock by an extra-time golden goal in a thrilling final. Much will depend on who lines out for the teams. Critical for the WWKC cause is Shane Kinsella, while for Kilcock the McCormack twins are key. A young side from North Kildare, including lethal attacker Niall Reilly, could cause an upset.



Rheinisch rues ending Euros as a gate crasher

CANOEING (SLALOM): Eoin Rheinisch, fourth in the men's K1 slalom at the Beijing Olympics two years ago, finished 16th in the European Championships in Bratislava.

In the semi-finals, Rheinisch was on for a clear run until he hit two upstream gates just before the finish for four penalty points. Ciaran Heurteau finished 26th and Patrick Hynes 46th. In the women's K1 heats, Hannah Craig was 23rd after hitting three gates.