Couch and Barrow eye Euro gold

17 May 2012 / 14:51

Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow moved a step closer to ending Great Britain's 74-year wait for a women's European Diving Championships gold medal after qualifying first for the platform synchro in Eindhoven.

The pair led throughout before finishing with a score of 310.20 and a comfortable cushion of 16.86 points ahead of defending champions Germany.

Couch and Barrow have enjoyed a breakthrough 12 months finishing fourth at last year's World Championships before taking bronze at February's World Cup.

They were also third in the final round of the World Series in Mexico last month to mark them as Europe's premier pairing.

"At that last World Series event we were the best European team, so hopefully we're the one's to beat," Couch said. "We've just got to go out and do our best. We're happy. We have a lot more to give so we're just going to save that for the final.

"It's was a nice steady performance from us both."

Betty Slade was the last British female to win a European gold - in the 3metre springboard at London 1938.

While Couch and Barrow showed they were ready to replicate that feat, they remained wary of improvement from their rivals on Thursday night.

With all six teams from the preliminary round going through, both conceded the likes of Germany and Ukraine were likely to step up their performances.

"It's the final that means the most, everyone pretty much just runs through their dives in the prelims," Barrow said. "Obviously they're still trying to do their best but there's a lot more to come in the final."