French win gold in men's lightweight double sculls

France hung on to win the lightweight men's double sculls in the Olympics rowing regatta on Friday in a very tight finish that saw Ireland battle it out with Norway's boat for the silver.

France's Pierre Houin (left) and Jeremie Azou with their gold medals.   -  Getty Images

France hung on to win the lightweight men's double sculls in the Olympics rowing regatta on Friday in a very tight finish that saw Ireland battle it out with Norway's boat for the silver. France's Pierre Houin and Jeremie Azou, who won in 6:30.70, took away the gold medal.

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Irish brothers Gary and Paul O'Donovan ultimately claimed silver medal. They came just 0.53 seconds behind France. Norway's Kristoffer Brun and Are Strandli finished in 6:31.39 to claim the bronze medal.

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Team USA, which has never medalled in the event, came heartbreakingly close to making a run for it — nearly catching the lead at the halfway point, just 0.13 second behind France.

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But the American men were denied in the final metres, dipping to a crushing fifth-place finish.