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Page last updated at 13:08 GMT, Monday, 24 August 2009 14:08 UK

Lightweights add to GB qualifiers

Venue: Poznan, Poland Dates: 23-30 August Coverage: Finals live on the red button, the BBC Sport website and 5 live sports extra; Highlights on BBC TWO

Hosking and Goodsell
Hosking and Goodsell are confident of a medal in Poznan

Great Britain's lightweights won two heats in Poland on day two at the World Rowing Championships as the men's eight made Sunday's final in thrilling style.

Women's double Hester Goodsell and Sophie Hosking beat Australia, who they considered a rival for gold.

And male counterparts Rob Williams and Paul Mattick were well clear of Italy.

But the men's and women's quads, women's eight and lightweight men's four will have to go through repechage races to reach the semi-finals.

Those second-chance races take place on Wednesday, with semi-finals on Friday.

Our target's got to be to get a medal; there's no reason why not

Tom Solesbury - GB men's eight

However the men's eight, stroked by former lightweight world champion James Clarke, booked their spot in next Sunday's final after overhauling Australia in the final stroke.

"We knew we had to catch the Australians and we stayed pretty calm. It was a bit close in the end but we did it," crew member Tom Solesbury told BBC 5 live.

"Our target's got to be to get a medal. There's no reason why not."

Goodsell and Hosking feel they still have work to do after winning in blustery conditions.


"We were pleased with today. It was a case of weather management out there and I think we did well," said Goodsell.

"We weren't perfect and we've got a lot to do in the next few days."

The women's eight were pleased with their performance, finishing behind favourites Romania but comfortably beating Canada.

And the women's quadruple scull of Katie Greves, Beth Rodford, Sarah Cowburn and Ro Bradbury did well in overtaking fancied Germany, even though they were out-paced by Ukraine.

There was disappointment, though, for the lightweight men's four, who were edged out of a semi-final qualifying place by Spain.

And the openweight men's quad struggled to come to terms with a new line-up, Brendan Crean replacing Bill Lucas, who has a viral infection.

The results take Great Britain's total of qualified crews to 10 after seven went through heats on Saturday.

Single sculler Alan Campbell was fastest in qualifying, beating Olympic silver medallist Ondrej Synek in 6min 54.15sec, three seconds faster than favourite Mahe Drysdale, who was in a weaker heat.

The GB men's pair of Andy Hodge and Peter Reed, the women's double, men's double and men's four also won heats.

Sculler Katherine Grainger and the women's pair qualified second in heats.

They will all be in action next on Thursday, aiming to reach Saturday finals.

Looking at everyone else's times we don't think that there's anyone here who is unbeatable

Peter Reed

Reed and Hodge - who took Olympic gold for GB in the four last August - have struggled to match the pace of New Zealand duo Eric Murray and Hamish Bond this season and the Kiwis were four seconds faster in the heats.

But Reed said: "We're pleased with our performance today and looking at everyone else's times, we don't think that there's anyone here who is unbeatable."

Annabel Vernon and Anna Bebington won their women's double scull heat with confidence, after missing the last World Cup event when Vernon was ill.

The men's four were also commanding, leading from the early phases to beat the Czech Republic, although Australia, Germany and New Zealand will all challenge them for gold.

In total, 54 countries are racing in Poznan, with 357 crews entered in 27 events, including five disabilty categories.

Great Britain have set a target of four medals of any colour from the championships, a year after they won six Olympic medals in Beijing.

GB won the season's World Cup series but Germany, New Zealand and Australia will rival them in the medal table.

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see also
Britain win two golds at Worlds
29 Aug 09 |  Disability Sport
GB keep faith in squad for Worlds
16 Jul 09 |  Rowing
Campbell confident ahead of Worlds
22 Aug 09 |  Rowing
Paralympic champ Aggar 'faster' for Worlds
22 Aug 09 |  Disability Sport
Rowing weight classes explained
30 May 08 |  Rowing
Rowing boat classes explained
30 May 08 |  Rowing
Power to your pull, with Andy Hodge
06 Jun 08 |  Rowing
Rowing on the BBC
07 May 08 |  Rowing

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