Olga Kamardina, FINA Correspondent in Russia

The British celebrated their first trip to the podium with the gold medal performance as the new discipline was successfully introduced into the program of the 21st FINA World Junior Diving Championships in Kazan.

The Mixed team event turned to be a 15 teams contest, each consisting of 2 to 4 divers of both genders and age groups. There were 5 dives without the Degree of Difficulty limit on the program, taken at least of four different groups, three of them were performed from 1m springboard, 3m springboard and 5m - 7.5m or 10m platform, and the rest two were a mixed synchro 1m and 3m springboard.

Owen Harrison of Great Britain at the 10m platform

Great Britain had a slow start at 1m synchro springboard, but recovered soon and the following three rounds – 1m and 3m springboard and 3m synchronized springboard earned them a solid lead. Owen Harrison was not the best-scoring diver at the 10m platform, but his 10m platform armstand backward dive, scored by 72.00, was pretty enough to seal gold for his team.

Champions were a handsome 13.70 points clear of the team Mexico, chasing them all the way through and finishing second. Chinese won bronze scoring 320.95 points overall.
The start of the home championships turned to be not very lucky for Russians. The team had been keeping to the top 3 all the way to the last round, where the Olympian Nikita Shleikher did not cope with a complicated 10m platform dive with the degree of difficulty 3.7. As a result, the team Russia finished fifth, earning 310.20. Canadians outscored them by 3.55 points, placing fourth.

Awarding Ceremony at the Aquatics Palace of Kazan

Celebrating her team's triumph, Katherine Torrance of Great Britain said:

“We are really happy to get this gold medal, the first one in the history of the Junior Diving Championships. We all hoped we would perform well, but we could not predict, that we would win the contest. Mixed team even is a great discipline, where everybody is involved! There are so many good divers, and everyone can have its contribution to the overall win!”.

“Team event is very special, - noted Paola Pineda of Mexico, a freshly-awarded silver medalist of the 21st FINA World Diving Championships. – You feel you are very responsible not just for your own performance, but for the overall tally, and this gives you the top motivation to move on and show your best.”

Chinese Nanju Zhang was very reserved commenting on their bronze performance:

“Bronze is not bad, but I think we were not perfect. We tried hard, but did not show our best. Our opponents were strong, but we preferred to be focused on ourselves rather than tracking the results of our opponents. We did feel that pressure today, this is why we were not on the top”.

Competition results.

21st FINA World Junior Diving Championships. Day 1

Mixed team event

1. Great Britain, 335.45 
2. Mexico, 321.75
3. China, 320.95
4. Canada, 313.75
5. Russia, 310.20
6. USA, 295.65
7. Germany, 295.10
8. Brasil, 282.00
9. Italy, 271.05
10. Singapore, 266.85
11. Columbia, 266.40
12. Australia, 263.50
13. Ukraine, 259.30
14. Japan, 211.80
15. Kazakhstan, 173.25