August 11, 2016 / 2:56 PM / 2 years ago

Croatian brothers win men's double sculls final

2016 Rio Olympics - Rowing - Final - Men's Double Sculls Final A - Lagoa Stadium - Rio De Janeiro, Brazil - 11/08/2016. Martin Sinkovic (CRO) of Croatia and Valent Sinkovic (CRO) of Croatia react after winning gold medals at the finish. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Croatian brothers Martin and Valent Sinkovic secured a gold medal in the men’s double sculls final in the Olympic rowing regatta on Thursday, in a tough duel that saw them battling Lithuania’s boat neck-and-neck for much of the race.

After taking an early lead and holding Lithuania’s Mindaugas Griskonis and Saulius Ritter to the second-place spot through the 1000-meter mark, Croatia slipped back into second place in the third-quarter.

Lithuanian fans in the stands at Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon cheered wildly as the two boats battled for gold through the final half of the race.

Ultimately, Croatia won in a time of 6:50.28, Lithuania claimed silver in 6:51.39 and Norway took bronze.

(This version of the story corrects silver medal winner to Lithuania in paragraph four).

Reporting by Angus MacSwan and Amy Tennery, editing by Susanna Twidale

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