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Rowing: Wells ready for next test after victory.


MATT Wells was celebrating being part of the first Great Britain team to win an overall World Cup trophy in 10 years yesterday, but the Hex-ham rower left Lucerne's Rotsee Lake with much work to do ahead of next month's World Championships in Munich.

Wells and partner Stephen Row-botham travelled to Switzerland hoping to claim the overall double sculls series after a gold and a silver in the previous two world cups this summer. But they were unable to cope with Estonia's turn of pace in the second half of a tight race.

The double sculls have been closely contested all season, the Britons only narrowly edging out France in their semi-final on Saturday. In yesterday's final all six crews were neck and neck until Estonia broke away in the third quarter.

Slovenia and Great Britain tried to follow but while the latter claimed silver, they were caught cold by the East Europeans.

"We raced long and strong and nice and clean but we didn't expect that from Estonia," admitted Rowbotham. "I guess we now need to go away and find a special 500m of our own."

Britain won World Cup gold in the lightweight men's four for the first time on their way to taking the overall trophy from Germany. There was also gold for the women's quadruple scull who, like the lightweight men's four, picked up the overall trophy in their event.

"We'll go to the world championships with a degree of confidence," said performance director David Tanner. "This has been our best team result ever across the World Cup series with all three of our disciplines winning gold in at least one world cup."

The women's eight, who included Durham's Jess Eddie, put in a solid performance to finish fourth in their final. The GB squad now has a three-day break before resuming training.


Results: Page 45


TAKING THE STRAIN: Hexham rower Matthew Wells, left, and team-mate Stephen Rowbotham in action for Great Britain in the Men's Double Sculls at the World Cup in Lucerne, Switzerland.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Jul 16, 2007
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