Tokyo Olympics: Kurt Walker and Rory McIlroy agonisingly miss out on medals on day nine

McIlroy shot a final round of 67 to make the seven-way bronze medal play-off

Ireland golfer Rory McIlroy and boxer Kurt Walker fell narrowly short of securing bronze medals on day nine of the Tokyo Olympics.

McIlroy missed out in a dramatic play-off while featherweight Walker lost his quarter-final on a tight split decision.

In the golf, four-time major winner McIlroy was one of seven players to finish his final round on -15, after American Xander Schauffele beat Rory Sabattini to the gold.

In the sudden death play-off McIlroy made par on the first two holes as the field was narrowed down to five, but exited with a par at the third as Open champion Collin Morikawa and eventual bronze medallist CT Pan made birdie.

The County Down native made it into the play-off after shooting 67 in his final round, making birdie on the 17th to join the group in third having dropped back with a bogey at 15.

Shane Lowry, who began the day just one shot behind his Ireland team-mate McIlroy, had to settle for a tie for 22nd after a level par final round.

He dropped three shots on the front nine and despite pulling his round back with three birdies was unable to challenge for a medal.

Kurt Walker
A slow start saw Walker lose the opening round on all five judges scorecards before a strong response in rounds two and three

Walker missed out on securing a medal in the men's featherweight division as he fell to a split decision loss to American Duke Ragan in Tokyo.

Ragan won the contest 3-2 on the judges scorecards to advance to the semi-finals and guarantee at least a bronze.

It was a disappointing end for Lisburn's Walker who knocked out top seed Mirazizbek Mirzakhalilov in the previous round.

In a tight contest Ragan, a professional boxer with a 4-0 record, came out on top courtesy of a faster start that saw him emphatically win the opening round on all five judges cards.

Walker roared back in rounds two and three, throwing more shots to put his opponent on the back foot. The 26-year-old European gold medallist did win the final two rounds on split decisions but could not sufficiently claw back the damage done in the first round.

Having toppled world champion Mirzakhalilov it had been hoped that Walker could secure Ireland's second medal in the ring, after Aidan Walsh reached the welterweight semi-finals.

Monkstown ABC's Walsh was forced to settle for silver as an ankle injury saw him withdraw from his bout with Great Britain's Pat McCormack.

On the track, Eilish Flanagan took six seconds off her personal best in the 3000m steeplechase heats clocking 9:34.86 to finish 12th as Michelle Finn also impressed with a time of 9:36.26 to take ninth as competitors had to contend with searing heat and unforgiving humidity at the Olympic Stadium.

Despite the strong showings, neither was able to book a place in Wednesday's final.

There was disappointment too for Thomas Barr despite a season's best 48.26 in the second 400m hurdles semi-final. The European bronze medallist recorded the ninth fastest time and was the third fast loser, with only the two fastest joining the heat winners and runners up in the final.

Great Britain's men's hockey team bowed out in the quarter-finals, with Northern Irish duo David Ames and Ian Sloan part of the side that lost 3-1 to India.

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