European Rowing Championships: Helen Glover and Polly Swann take gold


Double Olympic champion Helen Glover won gold in her first competition in five years when she and Polly Swann triumphed in the women’s pair at the European Rowing Championships in Italy.

The British duo held Romania back and won in seven minutes and 2.73 seconds.

It was the first meeting of the 34-year-old Glover since the 2016 Rio Olympics, where she won gold.

She wants to be the first woman to make up the British Olympic rowing team after having children.

Glover, who also won gold in London in 2012, has three children since her victory in Rio, including twins Kit and Bo.

She decided to make a comeback after spending time on a rowing machine during the first national coronavirus lockdown in 2020.

32-year-old Swann, who won women’s Olympic silver in 2016, was working as a temporary doctor in the founding year when the pandemic delayed the Tokyo Games by a year.

“It’s been a long winter but it feels pretty epic to come out to the race with Helen,” said Swann.

“I don’t think we expected a win.”

The duo won the World Cup gold together in 2013 and a year later a European title.

They qualified the quickest for the final on Sunday and were able to defy a late challenge from Romania to take the title.