Tomoaka Tasaka, FINA Press Correspondent in Japan

The second leg of the FINA/CNSG Diving World Series 2018 concluded today in Fuji (JPN), with the team of China earning the last three titles on offer, and completing, like in the inaugural meet of the circuit, a gold-medal sweep in the competition.

In the women’s 3m Springboard, Chinese divers naturally battled for gold. On Day 1, Shi Tingmao triumphed in the synchronised event and, once more, she perfectly controlled her nerves to perform at her best, despite the fierce opposition of her teammate Wang Han (CHN). In the end, Shi claimed gold with 388.05 points (a better score than the one at the 2017 FINA World Championships), while Wang collected 359.30 points to get silver.
 

“It was a pretty good score. The main reason was that I could remain concentrated throughout the entire competition. That wasn’t the case in Beijing. Moreover, the good performance on the synchro event on Day 1 also boosted my confidence. I hope I can continue diving at this level in the next World Series’ rendezvous,” Shi said.

 
About the pressure on her shoulders and the constant search for gold, she confessed: “I don’t want to compete against other athletes and be compared with them. I just want to do my best, show my best and keep my good shape until the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.”

Men

In the men’s 10m Platform, the last individual event in Fuji, Yang Jian (CHN) tried to turn the fate of the final in the third round, when he got 102.60 points for his 5156B combination. However, teammate Lian Junjie took back the top position in the fourth round and concluded with an accumulated score of 535.15 points to earn gold. His teammates welcomed him with an exciting cheering.
 

“I remain focused on the competition and on every dive. That was the key for victory. I got the highest score in the fourth round (307C) and from then I tried to keep myself stable and just do what the coach told me,” Lian said.

 
In the last event of this leg, the Mixed 3m Synchro Springboard, the 2017 World Championships gold medal’s pair Wang Han and Li Zheng (CHN) made a rock-solid performance and also won in Fuji.

The Mixed 3m event podium

Their most Impressive dive was a 107B. Their impeccable synchronisation and perfect entry gave them a valuable 74.40 points. Ultimately, they won the gold with 328.50 points.

“I feel very happy to get the gold medal. I want to thank the Japanese people for their warm hospitality and for the quality of this organisation. I think all our dives were good. We tried a new dive, more difficult, and we performed it very well,” Wang said.

 
“I want to thank my coaches, my partner, the entire Chinese team staff and the Japanese people. We could do as well as when we were training,” Li said.

Great Britain’s Tom Daley, bronze medallist in Rio 2016, withdrew from the 10m platform event and concentrated on the Mixed 3 m Springboard. However, the synchronisation with his partner was not perfect and with an overall score of 299.25 points they concluded in second, while Russia’s Nadezhda Bazhina and Nikita Shleikher got the bronze.

As it happened in Beijing, Team China bagged again all the gold available for the 10 events contested in Fuji. The world’s top divers will meet again in Montreal, Canada on April 24-27, 2018.