The moment Israel Olatunde realised he qualified for the Euro 100m final is what it's all about
The 20-year-old is a history-maker.
Israel Olatunde has become the first ever Irishman to reach the 100m final at the European championships. The Dundalk native was up against it, having been drawn in a difficult semi-final alongside Italy's Olympic champion Lamont Marcell Jacobs but he was undaunted, and on the biggest stage of all, he produced one of the best runs of his life.
His 10.20 time was enough to secure second place, and ensured he was automatic qualifier for the final which goes to tape at 9.15 tonight Irish-time. That will be a historic moment.
Olatunde has long been a rising star in Irish athletics but this was his best result to date, and you can just see just what it meant when it popped up on the big screen in the Olympic stadium that he had made it through.
What a momentpic.twitter.com/qYtEdyXEkz
— SportsJOE (@SportsJOEdotie) August 16, 2022
That's what it's all about. It really was a tremendous day for Irish sprinting as, just a couple of hours earlier, Israel's former training partner Rhasidat Adeleke qualified for the final of the women's 400m. Both athletes are coached by Tallaght ac man Daniel Kilgallon.
"He's just a fabulous young guy," said Derval O'Rourke, "He's just so incredibly hard-working," she added.
"He wants to be the best," added Robert Heffernan.
'This is obviously historic, an Irish 100m sprinter in a major championship final'
Israel Olatunde has qualified for the 100m final with a stunning run to second place in his semi-final #Munich2022 pic.twitter.com/hXWgX7Plk2
— RTÉ Sport (@RTEsport) August 16, 2022
Meanwhile, there was more green shoots for Ireland in the distance events as Ciara Mageean qualified for Friday's 1500m final, while Brian Fay (8th) and Darragh McElhinney left it all out there in the 5000m.