World Rowing Championships 2014 - Day 2

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Posted: August 25, 2014

Report from Mike Haggerty in Amsterdam

Alan Sinclair from Inverness became the first of the six Scots in the GB team to qualify for this weekend's finals of the World Rowing Championships here in Amsterdam when, along with crew-mates Scott Durand and cox Henry Fieldman, he won the opening heat of coxed pairs on Monday afternoon, crossing the line with over two lengths of clear water ahead of Italy.

The British crew grabbed the only available direct slot from this race, beating Italy into second place and leaving Germany in third. Sinclair, Durand and Fieldman had lost to Germany in Lucerne and it is a measure of how well they have moved on as a crew since then that they were bow-ball to bow-ball with the Germans in the first half of the race before squeezing ahead and dismissing the German challenge.

They now race in Friday afternoon's final (15.15 BST) when they will face the formidable challenge of New Zealand's Eric Murray and Hamish Bond - unbeaten in any competition, including the London Olympic Games and five World Championships, for the last five years. The New Zealanders are doubling up in both their regular coxless pair event and coxed pairs at these Championships and cruised to victory in the other heat.

Forfar's Sam Scrimgeour was the other Scot in action, and along with partner Jonathan Clegg he won his opening heat of lightweight coxless pairs ahead of the Netherlands by over two lengths. Scrimgeour and Clegg now go on to Thursday's semi-finals along with the Dutch crew, with the qualifiers from the other heats being France, the Czech Republic, Ireland and China.

Edinburgh's world champion Polly Swann opens her campaign this year in Tuesday afternoon's opening heats of women's eights, while Victoria Meyer-Laker from Premney in Aberdeenshire will have a last chance to progress when she races in the repechage of women's quadruple sculls in the same session, after her crew finished fourth in Monday's opening heats.

Other British results on Day 2 saw all three Para-rowing crews qualify for their finals, while the lightweight four moved onto the semi-finals with their heat win over the Netherlands, who also qualified. Substitute lightweight single sculler Zak Lee-Green won his repechage to proceed to the quarter-finals.

By contrast the British lightweight women's quad finished fourth and last in their heat and now go to the repechage. Also in their repechage is the British men's double of John Collins and Jonathan Walton, who lost out on the one available direct slot to Germany, by just four-thousands of a second.

The British men's eight contrived to pick up an official warning and yellow card by being late to the start for their opening heat on Monday evening - they were late to the finish too, in second place half a length down on Olympic champions Germany, who took the only direct qualifying slot. The British will now have to qualify for the final from Wednesday's repechage. Poland won the other heat to qualify for the eights final, which will be the last race of the regatta on Sunday afternoon.

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