Kilkenny’s Mary Fitzgerald produced her best performance to date at a major Para Athletic event to win bronze for Ireland at the World Para Athletics European Championships in Bydgoszcz.
Mary faced tough competition which included European and Championship record holder Renata Zliwinska and Dutch competitor Lara Baars.
Mary started with a promising first throw of 7.02m and maintained a steady record through her first 5 throws. However, it was her last throw that was most impressive as Mary fired out an excellent effort of 7.35m to clinch the bronze medal. The standard of the competition was emphasised by the performance of gold medallist, Zliwinska, who broke her own championships record 3 times en route to claiming the top prize.
Mary’s attention can now turn to the Paralympic Games where she will hope to represent Team Ireland and replicate her performance from Bydgoscz.
Speaking about the performance Mary said ‘I was happy with the distance, I would have liked to have thrown a little further but really happy all the same. Lot’s of stuff to work on but I think that puts me in a good position going to Tokyo, I know what needs to be worked on and now I’m looking forward to the next block of training going on to Tokyo.’
Team Ireland will be represented tomorrow at the World Para Athletics European Championships by Jordan Lee in the T47 High Jump. Lee last competed at the European Championships at Berlin in 2018 when he claimed the Bronze Medal, a performance he will hope to at least match.
Elsewhere in Para Sports there will be Irish interest in the Canoe Sprint and Paracanoe Championships in Poznan whilst Colin Judge will also hope to produce a big performance at the Paralympic World Qualification Table Tennis Tournament in Slovenia where the Dubliner knows that a tournament win will secure a slot at the Paralympic Games.
Click here to see a full post race interview with Mary https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8EukfEruX3A
Team Ireland European Para Athletics Championship Results
02.06.2021 Mary Fitzgerald, F40 Shot Put, 7:35m (Bronze Medal)
01.06.2021 Greta Streimikyte, T13 1500m, 4:29:38 (Gold Medal)
Team Ireland European Para Athletics Championship Fixtures
European Para Athletics Championships Day 3, June 3rd
Jordan Lee, T47 High Jump, 10:19am
European Para Athletics Championships Day 5, June 5th
Michael McKillop & David Leavy, T38 1500m, 5:36pm
Niamh McCarthy, F41 Discus, 6:20pm