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DWS 2013, Dubai: China sweeps day one

Diving World Series

Dubai, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - China collected all four gold medals on offer on Day 1 of the FINA/Midea Diving World Series 2013 in Dubai. After picking up the gold in both the women’s and men’s 10m platform synchro finals this morning, the Chinese continued their domination of the sport with strong performances in both the women’s and men’s 3m synchro springboard finals tonight, reinforcing their undisputed position at the top of the diving world.

The women’s 3m synchro saw China's He Zi and Wang Han score the first ten for a women’s event on their first dive. The pair maintained their form with the best dive of each round, until the final round when Canadian duo Jennifer Abel/Pamela Ware top-scored with 71.10 for their 5152B (Forward 2 ½ somersaults with one twist), taking the Canadians from fifth to third.

The Canadians were delighted with the final score of 296.10 and the bronze medal.

Jennifer Abel said: “We are a new team and this is only our second competition, so we are really happy to have improved from last week. We need to get to know each other better and work on our team work as we are aiming for Rio”.

The Canadians finished just 1.8 points behind the Italian team of Tania Cagnotto and Francesca Dallape who finished with 297.90. The Italians, who placed fourth at the London Olympics, were very happy with their result after finishing sixth last week in the first round of the FINA/Midea Diving World Series in Beijing.

“We are coming back after a very long break and this was unexpected so we are very happy as we are only just getting into it” said Cagnotto.

Olena Fedorova and Anna Pysmenska of Ukraine finished in fourth with 295.20, one place lower than last weekend in Beijing. The British team of Alicia Blagg and Rebecca Gallantree came into the competition in a good position having taken silver last weekend. They started strongly but dropped to sixth on their second dive, and could not make up the deficit, finishing fifth. Malaysia’s Yan Yee Ng and Jun Hoong Cheong finished in 6th on 292.20 points.

Women's 3m synchro podium in Dubai

In the men’s 3m synchro springboard final the tussle was a little tighter with the Chinese team of Qin Kai and He Chong predictably taking the early lead but waiting until the second last dive to really pull away. Strong performances from the Ukrainians Illya Kvasha and Oleksiy Prygorov pushed the Chinese duo. A superb 109C (Forward 4 ½ tuck) from the Ukrainians narrowed the lead to only 9.33 points going into round 5. The Chinese saved their best for last, scoring 102.60 for their 109C to seal victory.

The Ukrainians were delighted with their silver after finishing fourth in Beijing last weekend. “We had a problem in Beijing, we only had two days preparation there and were performing new dives so we are really happy with this result, and especially with our last dive”, (a 307C reverse 3 ½ somersaults tuck which scored them 89.25), said Prygorov.

“Silver is like gold behind the Chinese so this is great” he added.

The Mexican pair of Yahel Castillo and Daniel Islas started slowly, but a strong fourth dive, scoring them 84.00 for their 307C put them in contention and they gradually worked their way up to finish with the bronze with 406.17.

Men's 3m synchro podium in Dubai

After challenging early the American duo of Troy and Dwight Dumais slipped from third to finish fourth with 403.32, ahead of Malaysia’s Ahmad Amysar and Yi Wei Chew in 5th on 394.47. Christopher Mears and Nicholas Robinson-Baker of Great Britain finished sixth with 391.35.