Chinese divers add two synchronized gold medals at the worlds

Source: Xinhua| 2017-07-18 03:22:42|Editor: Yurou Liang


China's Shi Tingmao (L)/Chang Yani (R) celebrate with the Chinese diving team manager Zhou Jihong after winning gold in the women's 3m springboard synchronised final of Diving at the 17th FINA World Championships at Duna Arena in Budapest, Hungary on July 17, 2017. China's Shi Tingmao/Chang Yani won gold with 333.30 points. (Xinhua/Ding Xu)

BUDAPEST, July 17 (Xinhua) -- Fueled by Olympic champions Chen Aisen and Shi Tingmao, the Chinese diving team cinched two more gold medals in synchronized events at the 17th FINA World Championships here on Monday.

Chen and Yang Hao won the men's 10m Synchronized Platform with 498.48 points, while Shi and the 15-year-old Chang Yani took away the gold in the women's 3m Synchronized Springboard at 333.30.

The "dream team" has tallied five gold medals out of seven so far in Budapest.

The duo of Chen and Yang met little resistance from other rivals, as they maintained their leading position from the opening round to win by a margin of almost 40 points. Aleksandr Bondar and Viktor Minibaev of Russia finished runners-up at 458.85. Patrick Hausding and Sascha Klein of Germany were positioned third with 440.82 points.

Setting a target of finishing over the 500-point bar, Chen, who tasted the Olympic gold medal with Lin Yue in Rio, thought that the two divers had much room for improvement.

"Still we feel pretty satisfied with this result, as it is our highest score as partners," he said.

It was Yang's second title at the World Championships after the Mixed 3m Synchronized Springboard with Wang Han two years ago in Kazan.

"This one has much more weight to me because it is the Olympic event, and we feel happy about it," commented Yang.

Shi and Wu Minxia combined to claim two World Championships titles and the Rio Olympic Games gold medal in the 3m event. Witnessed by retired Wu, who acted as a TV commentator in the Hungarian capital, Shi and her new teenager partner led from the very first dive to extend her winning record to three in the event at the worlds.

"I want to compliment my partner. She is only 15 years old, but she has been the champion now. It proves that we can work some magic," said Shi.

Chang, who regrouped herself quickly from an early exit in the 1m Springboard preliminary, found it a little stressful as she took the role from the five-time Olympic champ Wu.

"I feel a little pressure, as it is just my first time at the worlds," she pointed out.

Canadian duo of Melissa Citrini Beaulieu and Jennifer Abel were placed second with 323.43 points. Kristina Ilinykh and Nadezhda Bazhina of Russia took away the bronze at 312.60.

Elsewhere on Monday, Italian duo of Giorgio Minisini and Manila Flamini won the Mixed Duet Technical of Synchronized Swimming with 90.2979 points, 0.0340 more than their Russian opponents Mikhaela Kalancha and Aleksandr Maltsev.

Defending champion Bill May of the United States sat third at 87.6682 with Kanako Kitao Spendlove.

KEY WORDS: diving