Daley takes gold

22 April 2012 / 07:22

Former world champion Tom Daley completed an impressive World Series campaign by claiming gold in the 10metre platform in Tijuana, Mexico.

With his major Chinese rival and world champion Qiu Bo absent, Daley stamped his authority over an otherwise world-class field to score 562.85. That was almost 20 points clear of his closest challenger as the 17-year-old proved he is the biggest threat to Bo at this summer's Olympic Games in London.

Daley had claimed silver in the opening three legs of the World Series, finishing behind Bo in the opening two, to undermine claims he is not on course for an Olympic medal.

British Diving performance director Alexei Evangulov warned Daley in February that he faced bombing out in London because he was allowing his media commitments to affect his training.

Evangulov also likened Daley to fallen-star former tennis player Anna Kournikova and claimed his Chinese rivals "trained three times harder".

A meeting between the duo after the World Cup in London resolved the matter and since Daley has rediscovered the form that helped him become world champion as a 15-year-old in 2009.

The Plymouth diver has also found success in the platform synchro with Peter Waterfield, adding a bronze medal to their silver earlier in the World Series.

This performance was, however, undoubtedly Daley's best as he narrowly beat his highest World Series score by 0.05 points, rounding out his performance by attracting a 10 for his final dive. Waterfield had been fourth heading into the final dive but the veteran had to be content with sixth place.

Daley's gold medal capped a memorable day for Great Britain as men's 3m synchro pair Chris Mears and Nick Robinson-Baker claimed silver - the first ever global medal as a partnership. The pair were beaten only by Chinese duo Kai Qin and Yutong Lou as they stunned their rivals with a score of 436.74.

The meet then concluded with a bronze for women's platform team Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow.