Men’s Pair (M2-) – Final
The World Champion Croatians were the first to show. Brothers Valent and Martin Sinkovic like to lead from start to finish but they were up against the best today. Sitting one lane over was last year’s fifth-placed finalists New Zealand’s Michael Brake and Thomas Murray. Murray took over a spot in this pair after the retirement of Bond and Murray. Australia’s Sam Hardy and Joshua Hicks sat right with the New Zealanders in third. At the half way point the Sinkovics had over a boat length lead with Murray and Brake still in second with Australia under threat from the Italians. The saw four boats going for three medal spots.
Croatia has had an up and down season due to injury, but they were definitely back on form as they came into the final sprint in dominating fashion. At 43 strokes per minute Croatia had won. At 42, New Zealand took silver and Australia at 41 were back in third after breaking away from Italy.
Results: CRO, NZL, AUS, ITA, ESP, FRA
Valent Sinkovic (s), Croatia, Gold
“It was a hard and long race for us but we had a plan to go out hard at the start. New Zealand were really strong in the middle 1000 meters, so in the last 500 meters we had to go really hard ourselves. We are delighted to have won!”
Thomas Murray (b), New Zealand, Silver
“That wasn’t really our game plan. Croatia raced their best. We did what we came here to do today, but it wasn’t enough.”
Sam Hardy (b), Australia, Bronze
“It was very heavy because there was a headwind, so we just tried to hold the wave as best as we could. We are very excited about the result.”
Re-watch the race here