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Five Months After Contemplating Retirement, Puspure Wins World Bronze

25 September 2022; Sanita Puspure, left, and Zoe Hyde of Ireland celebrate after finishing third in the Women's Double Sculls Final A, in a time of 06:52.81, during day 8 of the World Rowing Championships 2022 at Racice in Czech Republic. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

By PJ Browne
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Santina Puspure and Zoe Hyde won Ireland's third medal of this year's World Rowing Championships when they claimed bronze in the women's double sculls in the Czech Republic.

Puspure, who previously won gold in the singles at the 2018 and 2019 World Championships, endured disappointment at the Olympic Games in Toyko last year. The three-time Olympian admitted following Sunday's final that she had contemplated retirement earlier this year.

"To be honest, I wasn't planning to be here this year at all," she told RTÉ.

"I just kept training because I couldn't make a decision. Then I was really close to retiring some day in April. Then Guisseppe (De Vita) put us in a boat, and changed the training. I was excited to go training again. It was very different."

Asked if she would continue rowing for another two years, taking her up the Olympics in Paris, Puspure replied, "We'll take one month at a time! I must get home first, and reassess."

25 September 2022; Sanita Puspure, left, and Zoe Hyde of Ireland after finishing third in the Women's Double Sculls Final A, in a time of 06:52.81, during day 8 of the World Rowing Championships 2022 at Racice in Czech Republic. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

Rowing in the single sculls was a new experience for Puspure.

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"The teamtalk is a little bit longer," she said.

"I'm not as a lonely in a tent any more. It's a new experience for me, new challenges."

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In contract to the international experience of Puspure, it is Hyde's first year in international rowing. The pair finished just ahead of fourth-placed Austria in the final.

"A legend behind me, it's made the whole experience of rowing amazing," said Hyde.

"Her experience is everything. It just calms me down so much.

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"I had a look over at 750m and [Austria] were ahead. I was like, 'OK, we need to put the head down and just give it a go'. We knew they'd be fast, and were ahead of them a good bit in the heat, but when we watched the semis back, they'd come on a good bit after a couple of days."

See Also: "It's Fine Yeah" - O'Donovan Hilariously Coy After He And McCarthy Take Yet Another Gold

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