Divers win two bronze and qualify team for Rio
26 July 2015
DIVING: Australia has won two bronze medals in the diving at the World Aquatic Championships in Kazan, and have also qualified their women’s 3-metre synchro team for the Rio Olympics.
Samantha Mills and Esther Qin continued their strong form in 2015 to finish third behind China and Canada in the synchro final, with the top three teams automatically qualifying for the 2016 Olympics.
And two days after diving together for the first time, Australia’s Melissa Wu and Domonic Bedggood won bronze in the mixed platform synchro, although the result has no impact on the Olympics as mixed synchro is not on the programme.
Mills and Qin started strongly in their final, sitting in the silver medal position after the first three dives.
But a low score on their penultimate dive slipped the Australians back to fourth, before a big final dive lifted them back into the bronze medal position.
After a tentative start, Wu and Bedggood finished strongly to grab third behind China and Canada in the first ever World Championship synchro event.
After two dives the Australians were back in equal eighth, but moved to the bronze medal position with just one dive to go.
“We had our first session two days ago, so this was our second session,” Bedggood said.
“When we saw our coaches after two dives, they told us this is where the competition begins. We knew our optionals were our strongest dives, so we just had to get those right.
“We were just going out there to have fun, and get the nerves out of the way, given it was our first competition dive and my first World Championships.”
Their final score was less than two points behind Canada, who leapfrogged from fourth on the final dive.
“The Canadians did the whole World Series together, they train in the same city, so we’re pretty happy to finish with bronze,” Bedggood said.
Bedggood is based on the Gold Coast and Wu, who posted pictures on social media this week showing her and Bedgood’s first ever dives together, trains in Sydney.
The mixed events are not included on the Olympics program.
“It’s great to start of the campaign with a medal, but now it’s time to focus on the Olympic events and try and do just as well in those,” Bedggood, who will contest the individual platform and the men’s synchro later this week, said.
ROSS SOLLY FOR DIVING AUSTRALIA