BOTH Laois athletes competing at this year’s European Transplant and Dialysis Sports Championships in Krakow claimed medals.
Robbie Lyons, 20, earned two silver and a bronze for track and field events while Eddie McAuliffe, 42, came away with a bronze in the petanque event and a fantastic gold medal in the golf competition for his nett score in his debut games.
Robbie competed in the 18-29 year old category in his 400m and 100m sprint events. In the 100 metres he crossed the line in 12.53 seconds securing a bronze for third position behind two Hungarians. In the 400m sprint with a time of 61.7 seconds he was just pipped to the post by a German competitor.
In the long jump Robbie secured a silver medal competing against athletes aged between 18 and 39 years and even one former Olympian who took old.
Robbie said after his first race, the 100m sprint: “I am really happy with the outcome. The racing conditions were extremely tough with the rain which makes me even more proud of my time.”
It may have been Portarlington transplant athlete Eddie McAuliffe’s first time picking up a Petanque ball in the Games but that didn’t stop him from claiming a medal.
Eddie, who received a kidney from his donor sister Anne, was delighted with the Bronze: “I am really enjoying my first Games. It’s competitive but great craic at the same time. It was a long but really enjoyable day. There was great sportsmanship. It’s my first time ever picking up a Petanque ball in competitive sport so I’m delighted with my bronze.”
More was to come however for Eddie as the golf competition had been his primary focus prior to travelling. The work he put in at Portarlington Golf Club paid dividends when he claimed the gold medal for his nett score.
The pair were among a tired but victorious 34-person strong Irish team who flew back to Ireland at the weekend.