London 2012, Day 6: Bo Qiu and synchro duo Zi He and Minxia Wu complete China's golden sweep
China was untouchable at the 18th FINA Visa Diving World Cup in London (GBR), claiming all eight titles on offer. The last two finals of this edition saw Chinese great Bo Qiu walking away with one victory in the men's 10m platform (574.90 points) and partners Zi He and Minxia Wu being the obvious winners in the women's 3m springboard synchro (345.30 points).
In the men's 10m platform, the crowd was delighted with eye-opening performances in this event known for featuring spectacular dives. It is in this event that the dives are the most complicated and the marks the highest. The degree of difficulty was of a very high level this season. Two competitors had a combination of a maximum degree of difficulty (DD) - 4.1. It implied a 4.5 Inward somersaults in tucked position, a really unique dive.
Lin Yue (CHN) performed the most complicated dives. An interesting detail is that when Lin Yue includes such a dive in his program, he does so with a 0,9 DD. To have so many dives of maximum difficulty in one programme means that the diver must be totally concentrated from the first to the last second of the competition.
Australian diving icon and Olympic champion Matthew Mitcham failed to qualify for the final, taking 13th. In Beijing (2008), Mitcham surprised everybody with the wonderful execution of the hardest armstand combination - a 2 Back somersaults with 2.5 twists. This year, something went wrong with the dive. As divers used to say, Mitcham lost his armstand twists. His marks for the dive in the semi-final were too low and cost him a spot in the final.
Another mistake was made by Mexico's Rommel Pacheco in the semi final: while performing a 4.5 Forward somersaults in tucked position, the diver opened too early and his entry in the water was totally spoiled. Pacheco was brave enough to keep going despite that his zero point for the dive made his fight to go in the final hopeless.
Peter Waterfield (GBR) created a sensation when he took the lead after the evening's final first round, considering Chinese superiority, this was quite an unusual feat. The British diver produced a magnificent performance, eventually taking third in the event.
There was a great number of impressive dives in the final, meaning that the competition level was very high: a 4.5 Forward performed by David Boudia (USA) in the third round after which the American temporarily moved up to the second position. Or the unique 3.5 Back somersaults in pike position of Bo Qiu, a dive that earned him an incredible six perfect marks, amassing over 100 points. Or the 409C from young Malaysian Lomas Bryan Nickson. In the semi final, he missed the entry of his dive and it was the reason why Nickson hardly made it to the final with the 12th best performance.
One more “over a-hundred points” dive was executed by Bo Qiu in the fifth round which sealed his expected victory in the event. The surprise came from teammate Lin Yue when he made a mistake in his very last dive, a 2.5 Back somersaults with 2.5 twists and got quite low marks from the majority of judges. He eventually took sixth. Russia's Victor Minibaev was second with 523.60 points.