'I hope my sister is proud of me, watching from above' - Sanita Puspure 5 months ago

'I hope my sister is proud of me, watching from above' - Sanita Puspure

Sanita Puspure dedicated her world championship rowing victory to her late sister, Inese.

Sanita Puspure powered to another gold medal in the Women's Single Sculls at the World Rowing Championships in Austria, this afternoon. New Zealand's Emma Twigg started the final, in Ottensheim, like a rocket but Puspure stayed close behind a powered past both her and Great Britain Vicki Thornley in the closing stages.

The gold medal win comes on the back of a silver medal result for Ronan Byrne and Philip Doyle in the Men's Double Sculls, earlier in the day. On Saturday, Finbar McCarthy and Paul O'Donovan won Ireland another gold after a class performance in their final:

Puspure's victory saw her successfully defend the title she won in similar style in 2018 and comes at the end of what has been a tough few months for her and her family.

Two close relatives passed away in 2018 and Puspure's sister, Inese, was diagnosed with cancer in 2017. She battled the disease for two years but passed away earlier this year.

Following her gold medal victory, the 37-year-old spoke to RTE about a positive end to a rough summer:

"This race was quite emotionally charged for me. I wanted to do it for myself, for my family and for my mum as well. She needs something nice after what happened to us this summer.

"And I hope my sister is proud of me, as well, watching from above."

Proud doesn't even half cover it after this incredible showing from Puspure.

Ireland's medal haul at the world championships is now two golds, a silver and a bronze medal. They now also have four boats qualified for the Tokyo Olympics next year.

Puspure's only quibble was one that Irish officials will hopefully have sorted for Tokyo 2020 - no-one had an Irish tricolour ready for her after she crossed the finish line in triumph.