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Image / Living / Culture

Tokyo 2020: When the Irish Olympic team are competing and how to watch them


By Sarah Finnan
23rd Jul 2021

@team_ireland_olympic on Instagram

Tokyo 2020: When the Irish Olympic team are competing and how to watch them

The Olympic games are kicking off over in Tokyo today and there are plenty of team Ireland competitors to look out for

Pushed out from last year amid ongoing Covid-19 concerns, there have been mixed feelings over this year’s event but it’s all systems go as competitors slowly descend upon the Japanese capital. 

One of the summer’s most hotly-anticipated sporting events, the games draw worldwide attention anytime they’re on with millions of spectators expected to tune in over the competition’s two-week run. 

So, what do you need to know ahead of time? We’ve compiled a list of key dates and info for you, so all there’s left to do now is make sure the fridge is packed full of snacks to keep you going. 

Where to watch

Already anticipating an influx of interest in watching the games, RTÉ Sport has announced a comprehensive Olympic coverage across all mediums including TV, radio and online. The first time that the national broadcaster has secured a coveted seat reporting from inside the Olympic Games venue, producers confirmed that they’re “geared up to report on the largest-ever Irish Olympic team of 116 Team Ireland athletes”. 

RTÉ2 will be the home of Tokyo 2020 on TV this year with all of the content also to be made available to viewers on the RTÉ Player. RTÉ Radio 1 will have updates and reports throughout the day starting with a full catch-up on all events over on Morning Ireland as well as the live event action reporting in real-time from RTÉ’s very own dedicated radio studio in the Tokyo Olympic Broadcast Centre.

This will continue to link to any medal events that happen throughout the day on Claire Byrne; the News At One; The Ray D’Arcy Show and Drivetime.

RTÉ 2FM Game On will wrap up the day’s news, reports and action from the heart of the Games. At weekends, significant events will be broadcast live in the morning programme schedule. Both Saturday and Sunday Sport will have comprehensive coverage along with their usual GAA Championship action and all the other sport.

The broadcaster will also have 24-hour coverage of the games online including athlete reactions, live blogs, team profiles and exclusive interviews/analysis.

Key dates 

Sailing

Olympic silver medallist Annelise Murphy is in action this week, with two races of ten already under her belt, coming 35th and 12 respectively. She’s just wrapped her third race of the regatta, coming in 24th of 44 competitors. Ireland’s Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove will be in action on Tuesday morning.

Monday, July 26 
6.30am Women’s One Person Dinghy Laser Radial: Race 3 (Annalise Murphy)
8.30am Women’s One Person Dinghy Laser Radial: Race 4 (Annalise Murphy)

Tuesday, July 26
4am Women’s One Person Dinghy Laser Radial: Race 5 (Annalise Murphy)
6am Women’s One Person Dinghy Laser Radial: Race 6 (Annalise Murphy)
7am Men’s Skiff 49er: Race 1 (Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove)
Followed by: Men’s Skiff 49er: Race 2 (Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove)
Followed by: Men’s Skiff 49er: Race 3 (Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove)

Wednesday, July 27
7am Men’s Skiff 49er: Race 4 (Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove)
Followed by: Men’s Skiff 49er: Race 5 (Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove)
Followed by: Men’s Skiff 49er: Race 6 (Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove)

Thursday, July 28
4.15 am Women’s One Person Dinghy Laser Radial: Race 7 (Annalise Murphy)
Followed by Women’s One Person Dinghy Laser Radial: Race 8 (Annalise Murphy)

Badminton

Ireland’s Nhat Nguyen starts his Olympic bid on Monday, July 26 in the Forest Plaza.

Monday, July 26, 11.20am
Nhat Nguyen v Niluka Karunaratne (Sri Lanka)

Women’s Triathlon

Medals will be awarded at the end of this race where 56 athletes will swim 1500 metres, cycle 40 km and run 10 km, including Ireland’s own Carolyn Hayes

Monday, July 26, 10.30pm
Women’s Triathalon

Boxing

Tuesday, July 27 3.30am
Men’s Welterweight: Aidan Walsh v Albert Mengue Ayissi (Cameroon)

Wednesday, July 28
4.30am Men’s Featherweight: Kurt Walker v Mirazizbek Mirzakhalilov
10.15am Women’s Middleweight: Aoife O’Rourke v Li Qian (China)

Friday, July 30, 3am
Women’s Lightweight: Kellie Harrington v TBD

Shooting

Wednesday, July 27 1.50am
Men’s Trap Qualification (Derek Burnett)

Hockey 

Star goalie Ayeisha McFerran and the Hockey Ireland team will make their Olympic debut against South Africa on July 24th before facing off against their 2018 World Cup final opposition, The Netherlands. All times listed are Irish time.

Saturday, July 24 1.15pm 
Ireland v South Africa (2-0)

Monday July 26, 2am
Netherlands v Ireland (4-0)

Wednesday, July 28, 4.15am
Germany v Ireland

Friday, July 30 3.45am
Ireland v India

Saturday, July 31 12.45pm
Ireland v Great Britain

Rowing

The Women’s Four are into the final on Wednesday while Sanita Puspure and the Men’s Pair prep for their semis.

Wednesday, July 28, 1.50am
Women’s Four Final A (Aifric, Eimear, Emily and Fiona)

Rugby Sevens

Up there as one of the most talked-about events of the games, this is the first time that Ireland will field a rugby team in the games. Competing in Pool C, the Irish squad will face South Africa, the USA and Kenya with the first match set for July 26th. All times listed are Irish time.

Monday, July 26
3am Ireland v South Africa (33-14)
10.30am USA v Ireland

Tuesday, July 27
3am Ireland v Kenya

Swimming 

Nine Irish swimmers are in Tokyo to compete in the games with Mona McSharry has stormed into the 100m Breaststroke final. All times listed are Irish time.

Monday, July 26
11.20am Men’s 200 Metre Butterfly Heat 2 (Brendan Hyland) – rescheduled
11.45am Women’s 200 Metre Individual Medley Heat 4 (Ellen Walshe) – rescheduled

Tuesday, July 27
3.15am Women’s 100 Metre Breaststroke (Mona McSharry)
11.50am Men’s 200 Metre Breaststroke Heat 5 (Darragh Greene)
12pm Men’s 4 x 200m Freestyle Relay Heat 2 (Team Ireland)
11.30am Men’s 200 Metre Freestyle Heat 1 (Daniel Wiffin)

Wednesday, July 28
11.30 am Women’s 200 Metre Breaststroke Heat 1 (Mona McSharry)

Thursday, July 29
11.45am Men’s 100 Metre Butterfly Heat 3 ( Shane Ryan)

Golf

The men’s golf event is up first with both Shane Lowry and Rory McIlroy gearing up for the competition on July 29th. Leona Maguire and Stephanie Meadow won’t be far behind with the women’s event taking place on August 4th. All times listed are Irish time.

Wednesday, July 28, 11.30pm
Men’s Golf begins (finishes August 1)

Wednesday, August 3, 11.45pm
Women’s Golf begins (finishes August 7)

Judo

Wednesday, July 28, 3.30am
Women’s 70kg: Megan Fletcher v Micheala Polleres (Austria)

Thursday, July 29 3.30am
Men’s 100kg: Ben Fletcher v Mukhammadkarim Khurramov (Uzbekistan)

Athletics

The athletics events kick off in week two of the games with competitions running from Friday, July 30th to Sunday, August 8th.  27 Irish athletes will compete in athletic events over in Tokyo. Exact times are yet to be confirmed.

Diving 

Oliver Dingley and Tanya Watson lead the Irish divers at this year’s games with competition taking place in the purpose-built aquatics centre from August 2nd. All times listed are Irish time.

Monday, August 2, 7am
Men’s Three Metre Springboard (Ollie Dingley)

Wednesday, August 4, 7am
Women’s 10 Metre Platform (Tanya Watson)

Ireland is also being represented in track cycling, badminton, shooting, equestrian, road cycling, sailing, triathlon and modern pentathlon, however, we’re still waiting for confirmation on specific times. Visit Team Ireland’s official Olympic schedule for the most up-to-date information, just remember that the times will be 8 hours ahead, so you’ll have to backdate all times by eight hours.

Closing ceremony

Due to run for just over two weeks, the closing ceremony is set for Sunday, August 8th at 8 pm (12-noon Irish time). 

The above is just a taste of what to expect, but you can find out more about each of the individual athletes and the sports they’re competing in by checking out their athlete profiles here.

Feature image via @team_ireland_olympic