Changzhou 2010: Australia's Matthew Mitcham takes men's 10m platform title on last day
Just like a replay of the Beijing Olympics, Australia's Olympic champion Matthew Mitcham enjoyed his "lucky day" by winning the men's 10m platform and was the one who stopped China's medal clean-sweep on the last day of the 2010 FINA Diving World Cup.
China won seven out of the eight titles on offer at the World Cup (apart from the inaugural "Team Event" which was taken by the Americans).
The last event of the World Cup, the men's 10m platform seemed a little "lackluster" as defending champion Sascha Klein from Germany experienced ear pain, 2009 world champion Tom Daley from Britain stayed at home to prepare for the Commonwealth Games and 2007 world champion Gleb Galperin from Russia did not attend the event.
Despite the absence of these "threats", it was nevertheless a hard fight until the last dive as the front runner changed after every round.
Mitcham placed fourth after the first two dives before he performed a flawless 307C (Reverse 3 1/2 Somersault, Tuck) with a total of 99 points, meaning that all the judges gave him a perfect 10.
However, Huo Liang, China's Olympic diving synchro champion, scored a day-high 108 points for his fourth dive 207B (Back 3 1/2 Somersault, Pike) to take the lead while Mitcham placed second.
In his last two dives, Mitcham collected 97.20 and 100.80 to secure the title with 562.80 points, while Huo and teammate Qiu Bo took placed second and third, with 555.40 and 554.70 points respectively.
Russia's Viktor Minibaev and Cuba's Jose A. Guerra finished fourth and fifth, with 525.40 and 511.95 points respectively.
After his performance, Mitcham said:"Today is my lucky day! My performance can be called perfect. It is a very close competition in which everyone shows his best and that pushes me to try my best, too."
"It's much harder for the champion today than it was two years ago at the Beijing Olympics," Mitcham admitted.
The top six finalists all scored more than 500 points. China missed the men's 10 platform gold medal at the 2007 and 2009 FINA World Championships as well as the 2008 World Cup and Beijing Olympic Games.
In the women's 3m springboard synchro, China's He Zi/Wu Minxia grabbed the gold medal with 354.90 points, while Russia's Svetlana Filippova/Anastasia Pozdniakova took silver, totaling 323.52 points and Canada's Jennifer Abel/Emilie Heymans settled for the bronze, scoring 322.50 points.
The 2010 FINA Diving World Cup, which was successfully held on June 2-6, attracted 146 divers from 33 countries and regions.