Rowing: British pair relishing the challenge

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The Independent Online
Six of Britain's nine crews were consigned to trial by repechage on the opening day of the World Championships at Strathclyde Park, Motherwell, yesterday.

Two of the top title hopes, Alison Brownless and Jane Hall, remained on target with a heat win in the coxless pairs in 8min 13.79sec. But on a day of shifting winds, with skill at a premium, their time was outclassed by the United States pair, Christine Smith and Ellen Minzer, who won their heat in 8:09.04. The British pair are ready to pick up the challenge, though, with Hall promising: "It's payback time. They beat us last time."

Britain's lightweight quadruple sculls won through to their semi-final with third place behind Ireland and the Czech Republic while the men's coxed fours took second in their heat, but Romania, Russia and the Czech Republic emerged as the likely title contenders.