Greg Eggert, FINA Media Committee Honorary Secretary

Women's 10m Synchro Platform

Synchro partners Kim Mi Rae and Jo Jin Mi of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea won their first gold medals in the 2019 FINA/CHSG Diving World Series in Montreal (CAN) tonight, scoring 329.70 points in the women's 10m Synchro Platform. 

In the two previous editions held in March Kim Mi Rae was paired with Kim A Rim and their duet managed to earn a silver medal in each. The Korean pair scored 319.50 points in Sagamiahara (JPN) and 325.80 points in Beijing's Olympic Water Cube behind the Chinese champions. 

This is the first event of the 2019 World Series in which China relinquished a gold medal across the ten events contested at each edition. Divers from the Democratic People's Republic of Korea placed second in 4 of the 5 World Series events held in 2018 and finished third in the overall rankings behind China and Malaysia last year.

The Canadian pair of Meaghan Benfeito and Caeli McKay enjoyed a breakthrough performance in front of a home audience at the Montreal Olympic Park Sports Centre to earn their first silver medal of the year in this event. Although they were in third place after their first two compulsory dives, their score of 101.40 was higher than usual for the pair, and added to their confidence going into the final three dives. They successfully executed their fourth dive (a back 3 1/2 Somersault), one with the highest degree of difficulty in their programme and landed in first place, if only temporarily. Their score of 72.96 on their final dive was lower than the final dive scoring of China and Korea, but it was enough for a silver medal, their first of the season in the 10m Synchro Platform event. The Canadians were shut out of the medals in all five of the 2018 World Series events, and managed only bronze medals in the Sagamiahara and Beijing editions earlier this season. Their scores of 311.70 and 313.14 in Japan and China were easily eclipsed by the 328.47 points they earned today, only 1.23 points from the gold medal.

Earning their first bronze medal in this event was the season's reigning champions from China.  The pair of Lu Wei and Zhang Jiaqi who had previously scored 340.44 points in Japan and 354.06 points in China, managed to tally a subpar 320.64 in the event. The Chinese divers won three of the five editions of 10m Synchro platform at the 2018 World Series events.  

The rest of the RESULTS are available here.

FINA/CNSG Diving World Series RANKINGS in this event after three editions: 

CHINA - 75 points
PRK - 75 points
CAN - 66 points
MAS - 48 points
GRB - 44 points
MEX - 39 points
USA - 31.5 points
JPN - 9 points

Quotes from the medallists following the Awards Presentation:

Kim Mi Rae and JO Jin Mi (KOR), gold: 

"We dove well. It was our goal to do our best."

Meaghan Benfeito (CAN), silver: 

“I’m extremely happy with how things went today. It was our time to show what we were able to do in our home pool"

Caeli McKay (CAN), silver:  

“I’m happy! Our back three and a half was a risk, but it paid off. Meaghan and I are really a team now.” 

Zhang Jiaqi (CHN), bronze: 

"I feel sorry I did not dive as well as in my training."

Lu Wei (CHN), bronze:

"I also feel sorry too. I think I will do better in my personal events."

Men's 10m Synchro Platform

A new combination of Chinese male divers captured their country's third consecutive gold medal in the 2019 FINA World Series. Yang Hao and Lian Junjie led through the first four rounds but stumbled slightly on their final two dives. The pair led from start to finish but they failed to score the highest dives in rounds 5 or 6.  They were challenged by their fifth and sixth dives; a 3.7 degree of difficulty of the Forward 4 1/2 Somersault and the Back 2 1/2 Somersault 1 1/2 Twist with a 3.2 DD.  Despite scoring both of those dives below the marks received by the Daley/Lee duo from Great Britain, the Chinese men scored 464.52 points to earn their first gold medals as synchro partners in 2019.  In 2018 the Chinese won the 2018 FINA World Series titles in Beijing, Fuji, JPN and also in Montreal last year. A different pair won the first two editions of the 2019 FINA World Series events.

The British team of two time Olympic medallist Thomas Daley and Matthew Lee earned their first medal ever as partners in the Men's 10m Synchro Platform.  Lee previously earned a Silver medal in the 10m Mixed Synchro at the 2017 FINA World Championships.  Daley earned his Olympic bronze medals at the 2012 London Olympics in the 10m Platform and in Rio at the 2016 Olympics in the 10m Synchro Platform. The British pair were in third after the first two dives, in fourth after the the third dive and going in the wrong direction by landing in fifth position after the fourth dive. They nailed the final two dives, scoring the highest marks of the field in their fifth and sixth dives, allowing them to finish in second place.  They were off the medal stand in the previous editions of the 2019 FINA World Series.  Daley's last medal is this event was a bronze in March 2018 with Daniel Goodfellow in Beijing.  Daley and Lee scored 412.20 today in Montreal compared to the 400.68 bronze performance of Daley and Goodfellow last year.   

Also finding their way to the medals podium were Mexican divers Kevin Berlin Reyes and Andres Isaac Villarreal Tudon. The Mexican duo got off to a rocky start in their first three dives, falling into fifth place among the seven competing pairs after each round. Scores on their fifth and sixth dives moved them into fourth place. Their final dive of a Back 2 1/2 Somersault 2 1/2 Twists with a DD of 3.6 moved them from No Medal to Bronze Medal.  Their score of 398.46 points earned their first medal is this event in 2019.  

The rest of the RESULTS are available here.

FINA/CNSG Diving World Series RANKINGS in this event after three editions: 

CHINA - 81 points
RUS - 63 points
GBR - 60 points
AUS - 51 points
MEX - 45 points
USA - 33 points
CAN - 33 points
JPN - 12 points

Quotes from the medallists following the Awards Presentation:

Lian Junjie (CHN), gold: 

"I feel satisfied with my performance today.  with the exception of one dive, (109C Forward 4 1/2 Somersault) which was not so good.  My internal feelings were not right in that dive."

Yang Hao (CHN), gold:  

"Our performance was as good as our training and no more.  I will continue to do my best in my other events."

Tom Daley (GBR), silver: 

"Today was a mix of highs and lows, but that's typical for a diving competition, they say there are sometimes highs and you just have to be careful that you don't end up low.  I was happy with our first two dives but our third and fourth dives were terrible.  We were at the bottom of the pile.  I told Matt that anything can change in a single dive, we can go from the last place to the podium in a single dive.  We hung in there and managed to jump from last place to second place."

Matthew Lee (GBR), silver: 

"I am very happy with our placing. A silver medal today is also our first international medal together.  There is some work to be done in the first two rounds of our hardest dives and we have a year until the Olympic Games. I moved to London to start training with Tom in October of last year.  It's not very long at all, but we train every day together and we should be set for next year.  This is only our third international competition together. Our goals at this summer's World Championships are to get a medal, a top three finish is our first opportunity to qualify for the Olympic games and that's our ultimate goal."

Tom Daley (GBR), silver: 

"Matthew's right, a medal at World's equals qualification for Tokyo, and we want to try to qualify a year early to take the stress off.  Matthew is doing great. He's been fun to train with and it's nice to have a roommate who is good fun as well.  There is so much we need to learn about each other and how we in competition, but overall it's been great for both of us."

Kevin Berlin Reyes (MEX), bronze:

"We felt good. We had a little bit of failure, but we made it good. I think the 4th to the 6th dives were hard for us. I think we did good. I competed in my first major competition at the 2017 World Championships in Budapest. We may miss the Kazan World Series event for medical reasons plus we need to train for our nationals which are qualifying events for the World Championships and the Pan American Games."

Andres Isaac Villarreal Tudon (MEX), bronze:

"I felt that I wasn't great, but I am sure we can do better. We have competed together since last years World Cup in China. We have only competed together in 3 competitions. We don't train in the same city in Mexico. It's our first international medal together."

Women's 3m Synchro Springboard

China's tandem team of Shi Tingmao and Wang Han cruised to their third consecutive Gold Medal in the women's 3m Synchro Springboard event. Their score of 327.00 points was 20.73 ahead of their Canadian hosts and 23.61 points better than their Australian rivals. The Chinese maintained their unbeaten streak of winning each of the 2018 and so far all three of the 2019 FINA World Series titles in the 3m synchro springboard competition. Their scores in the March events held in Japan and China were 333.00 and 339.30 respectively, both marks slightly better than the 327.00 points scored in Montreal's third World Series event.

The hometown favorites who drew significant fan support on the first day of competition did not disappoint their audience. Jennifer Abel and Melissa Citrini Beaulieu earned their second silver medal of the 2019 season by bettering the 302.97 tally earned in Japan where they finished in second behind the Chinese champions. It was a pleasant result following their 6th place performance in Beijing a little more than six weeks ago. The pair recovered gracefully from near disaster in their Reverse Dive, the second dive on their program. Their score of 88.80 points was the lowest ranked of the either pairs, and took them from second position to tie for 6th. Their third and fourth dives kept them medal-eligible in third place, until their Inward 2 1/2 Somersault clinched the silver medal.

Australia's Maddison Keeney and Anabelle Smith reached the podium for the third time this season. They added another bronze medal to their trophy case achieving their third medal in this event for the 2019 campaign. The duo from down-under placed third in Japan and peaked in Beijing earning a silver medal behind the host nation. The Australians were tied for second with the Brits after the second dive and stood in second after their third and fourth dives. The pairs final dive, an Inward 1 1/2 Somersault earned only 69.30 points, not enough to hold of the Canadians.

The rest of the RESULTS are available here.

FINA World Series RANKINGS in this event after three editions:

CHINA - 81 points

AUS - 66 points

CAN - 60 points

GBR - 46.5 points

NED - 45 points

USA - 34.5 points

MAS - 24 points

RUS - 15 points

JPN - 12 points

UKR - 9 points

Quotes from the medallists following the Awards Presentation:

Shi Tingmao (CHN), gold:

"For us winning the competition today is making progress towards the Olympic Games next year."

Wang Han (CHN), gold:

"Although we are tired due to the jet lag, I think we performed very well today."

Jennifer Abel (CAN), silver:

“I made a mistake on the second dive, so I’m happy that we were able to come back strong and did not let it affect us. The energy from the crowd really made a difference for me today, it gave me a boost of adrenaline and I really wanted to do well here, at home.”

Melissa Citrini Beaulieu (CAN), silver:

“These are the girls that we will be competing against in Tokyo, so getting that second position means a lot to us. The feeling of competing at home is hard to describe. I feel relieved to finish with a silver medal.”

Maddison Keeney (ASU), bronze:

"I am satisfied overall, I think this is always something we can improve on. Every competition is a learning experience. I love training and diving with Anabelle. It is always enjoyable and it was an exciting competition today. This is my first time in Montreal but Anabelle has competed here before. At the World Championships in Korea we hope to culminate all of our efforts throughout this year, with everything coming together. It is our next major goal before Tokyo."

Anabelle Smith (AUS), bronze:

"It felt pretty good today. I think we were a little bit nervous and also jet-lagged. I have competed in Montreal before in the Canada Cup. Whenever you are competing in the Olympic venue it adds something special. While we try to treat every competition the same, this one just feels different, perhaps because of the venue. I think we are on the right track, and that's what are coaches tell us."