British duo edge through

20 February 2012 / 13:45

Nick Robinson-Baker and Chris Mears did just enough to seal their place in tonight's final of the springboard synchro at the FINA World Cup at the Olympic Aquatics Centre.

The duo, who have already qualified for the London Games, were never in any real danger of missing out despite finishing 10th to reach the 12-team final.

After a shaky start in front of a large crowd, the pair put their nerves to one side to get through with a score of 381.88.

That was well below the total that helped them to seventh at last July's World Championships and, after also slightly missing their new four-and-a-half somersault final dive, there is reason to expect they will be better tonight.

"Absolutely, there is room for improvement," Robinson-Baker said. "We were using our big front four-and-a-half somersault with a tuck in the end.

"It was actually the first time we have ever competed with it so there was a little bit of pressure at the end. I know Chris has done it a few times in meets, but I was definitely feeling for that.

But, we got it in our heads and we've gone through."

After becoming the first British divers to compete at the Olympic venue Robinson-Baker, an Olympian in Beijing, admitted he had been taken back by the support of such a large home crowd.

"(It was) absolutely mad. The crowd for me is so different," he said. "You hear them clapping for the other teams, it's only a few claps, but when we come on it's like the gladiators are in."

He also praised the facilities as the best he has experienced, adding: "We're dived in some fantastic pools all over the world but none of them come close to this. What a fantastic arena, and to fit 17,500 people in it for the Olympics is going to be amazing."

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