Ireland’s Modern Pentathlon challenge at London 2012 doubled overnight with the news that 20 year old Arthur Lanigan-O’Keeffe from Kilkenny has received a late call up to Team Ireland.
Arthur replaces a Polish competitor who has withdrawn and joins Natalya Coyle on Ireland’s Modern Pentathlon team.
At 20, he is one of the youngest competitors on the Olympic team. He is an elite sports scholarship student at UCD and resides in Dublin.
In the very complicated Olympic qualification processes that operate in Modern Pentathlon, it took the intervention of Pat Hickey at the highest IOC and world federation levels to ensure that Lanigan-O’Keeffe got his rightful place, following intensive discussions and legal arguments.
Despite a positive qualification campaign, with 2012 highlights of 20th at World Cup 2 in Brazil and 24th at the World Cup in China, Lanigan-O’Keeffe narrowly missed out on Olympic qualification.
Lindsey Weedon, Ireland’s Modern Pentathlon manager commented: “This is great news for our sport in Ireland. Arthur has done exceptionally well and just failed to gain his Olympic berth directly. With the withdrawal of the Polish competitor, Arthur’s Olympic dream has come true”