Divers Ward and Lee kickstart Euros with team bronze

Georgia Ward and Matty Lee made sure to kick off the European Aquatics Championships in style for Great Britain by sealing an impressive bronze medal in the mixed team event.

Ward, diving in her home pool of the London Aquatics Centre, and Lee accrued 353.85 from the judges from their six dives.

That was enough for third place behind Ukrainian pair Iuliia Prokopchuk and Oleksandr Gorshkovozov who took the silver with 396.40 points while the gold went the way of Russia’s Nadezhda Bazhina and Victor Minibaev who retained their European title for a third consecutive year with 413.40.

For Ward and Lee, who are also competing in the mixed synchro on Saturday, it was another podium finish in the same pool where they won World Series silver last year.

“That was incredible. It’s fantastic to come away with a medal,” Ward told British Swimming.

“This event is incredible. It’s at my home pool as well and we won a medal here for synchro at the World Series last year.

“So coming away from here with a European medal in the team event this year is great. I’ve got three events this week.

“We’re doing the mixed synchro as well on Saturday so we’ll be back training for that tomorrow and the individual on Friday should be good.”

Lee scored the first 10 of the competition with his second dive – an inward 3 ½ somersaults tuck – which earned him 86.40 to move the pair up from fourth to second after the four rounds of dives before they held on to finish with a medal.

He added: “It’s a really good start to the competition. I’ve never been in a team event before and it’s really good to get things kicked off and blow the cobwebs away for the other competitions later in the week.”

Earlier in the first day of action at the European Aquatics Centre there was an eighth place finish for the British synchronised swimming team of Olivia Federici, Katie Clark, Hannah Randall, Emma Critchley, Kate Shortman, Isabelle Thorpe, Jorja Brown, Phoebe Bradley-Smith, Zoe James, Danielle Cooper and Jodie Cowie in the team technical final.

They finished with a score of 76.9850 with Russia taking the gold and the European title with 94.0994.

“It’s really great to be part of the European Champs. I just love this pool and it has such a great vibe about it,” said Clark.

“And being in front of the home crowd makes it even more special and amazing, and it’s only going to get better as the week goes on.”

Sportsbeat 2016