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Post-Rio spotlight on...diving

 

Diving

Post-Rio spotlight on...diving

21 October 2016 / 14:50

Medals

Jack Laugher and Chris Mears (gold, 3m synchro)

Jack Laugher (silver, 3m springboard)

Tom Daley and Daniel Goodfellow (bronze, 10m synchro)

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Squads

MEN: Tom Daley, Daniel Goodfellow, Jack Laugher, Chris Mears, Freddie Woodward

WOMEN: Sarah Barrow, Alicia Blagg, Tonia Couch, Rebecca Gallantree, Lois Toulson, Grace Reid

Divinghug

 

The Rio recap

Seven of the 11 divers headed for Rio 2016 already had Olympic experience – with Tom Daley and Tonia Couch making their third Games appearance – so confidence was high that medals could be delivered.

And boy did they do just that. Daley – who won 10m platform bronze at London 2012 – and Olympic debutant Goodfellow secured the first of Team GB’s medal haul in the diving pool, sealing an incredible bronze medal in the synchronised 10m platform.

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That kick-started the momentum for our divers as, just two days later, Commonwealth and European champions Laugher and Mears added the ultimate crown to their CVs.

They pulled off a sensational victory in the synchronised 3m springboard to win Team GB’s first ever diving gold medal, scoring 454.32 points to take top spot ahead of the American and Chinese pairings.

And Yorkshire hero Laugher ensured it would be a Games to remember for him when he went on to take silver in the individual event, with Woodward missing out on a spot in the semi-final by the narrowest of margins.

After his bronze medal success early on in Rio, hopes were high for Daley ahead of the 10m platform, his signature event, but after setting a new Olympic record in the heats, the 22-year-old missed out on a spot in the final.

There was further angst for Toulson and Couch as they narrowly missed out on 10m synchro bronze with a fifth-place finish, although they did set a new personal best in the process, while Reid placed eighth in the 3m springboard final.

In the 3m springboard synchro, Gallantree and Blagg placed sixth in the final with a score of 292.83, while Sarah Barrow missed out a semi-final spot in the individual 10m platform, with Couch making the final.

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Did you know? Jack Laugher and Chris Mears – who when isn’t diving enjoys a fledging career as a dance DJ - share a flat together in Leeds

 

What next?

As attentions turn to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, one person who won’t be there is Sarah Barrow after she announced her retirement from the sport following 15 years on the platform.

But for the rest, the journey continues, and the first opportunity for our Olympians to compete on home soil will be the British National Diving Cup, in February, before attentions turn to the National Diving Championships, which come to Edinburgh in June 2017, the same month as the European Championships in Kiev.

The following month, our divers will head to Budapest for the World Championships, where Laugher and Mears will look to continue their success and improve on their 2015 bronze.

Medals will also be the target for Daley who, two years ago in Kazan, won individual 10m synchronised bronze, as well as team gold with Gallantree.

 

Did you know? Tonia Couch was a competitive gymnast before switching to diving

 

Ones to watch

MEN

Daniel Goodfellow

Just three years after making his senior debut for Great Britain, Goodfellow has enjoyed a stellar few years since, winning European silver alongside Daley in the 10m synchro, before the duo added Olympic bronze to their mantelpiece, this summer.

Still only 19, Goodfellow has many years on the diving board ahead of him, and the future looks bright for the Cambridge boy.

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Matty Lee

The city of Leeds certainly has a knack for producing world-class divers, and with European Games gold already to his name at just 18 years old, Matty Lee has the world at his feet.

After taking the 10m platform title in Baku last year, Lee added European silver and bronze to his medal haul earlier in 2016.

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WOMEN

Lois Toulson

At just 16 years old, Toulson made her Olympic debut this summer, competing in the women’s 10m synchro alongside Tonia Couch – finishing fifth - having become a European Games champion in 2015.

She is a three-time World Series medallist, and finished fifth at this year’s European Championships.

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Grace Reid

Having made her Commonwealth Games debut aged just 14 in Delhi, 20-year-old Reid competed once more in Glasgow, four years later.

This year, she made her mark on the diving scene, taking European mixed 3m synchro gold with partner Tom Daley, before winning bronze in the 3m springboard event, becoming the first Scot to win an individual European Championships diving medal for Great Britain since 1954.

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Sportsbeat 2016