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China sweeps medal board at FINA Diving World Cup

Xinhua | Updated: 2018-06-11 10:22
Gold medallist Chang Yangni and Shi Tingmao of China during the medal ceremony for the women's 3m Synchro Springboard final on FINA Diving World Cup 2018 at the Wuhan Sports Center on June 10, 2018 in Wuhan, China. [Photo/VCG]

WUHAN -- China finished the 2018 FINA Diving World Cup 2018 with a clean sweep of all 11 gold medals on offer, after Olympic champions Chen Aisen and the pair of Shi Tingmao and Chang Yani brought home the host nation's final two victories here on Sunday.

Chen, who led the first four dives despite making a mistake in his 207B dive, stayed cool in his final two dives to lift his first individual World Cup title in the men's 10m platform final with 557.80 points.

2014 World Cup winner Yang Jian failed to earn the gold medal on his birthday, as he trailed behind Chen before scoring 102.60 in his fifth 207B dive, becoming the new pace-setter with a 0.45 point advantage over Chen. However, Yang made an error in his last 109B, the most difficult dive with a 4.1 degree of difficulty. He only managed 79.95 points and had to settle for silver with a total of 537.40.

David Dinsmore of the United States kept the same position as he did two years ago in Rio and took bronze with 489.80.

Afterwards, Chen noted his surprise at having won despite recent setbacks. "It was completely unexpected for me to have my best performance of the year here. I did not expect to win gold since I have been sick and had injuries during the winter, and am still trying to find my form again now. The reason I won was because I did not give up even when I was at a low ebb."

Meanwhile, 24-year-old Yang was able to console himself with a rousing rendition of "Happy Birthday" from local fans, and explained why he felt he had lost out to Chen.

"It was a pity to only score a silver medal as a birthday gift, but I am lucky and happy that the audience celebrated my birthday at the pool deck. I made mistakes in the 5156B and 109B dives that cost me the chance of walking away with the victory. I need to improve my consistency."

In the women's 3m springboard synchro, defending champions Shi Tingmao and Chang Yani dominated the field, scoring 334.80 points, ahead of the Canadian pair of Jennifer Abel and Melissa Citrini-Beaulieu who scored 302.04, and Esther Qin and Anabelle Smith from Australia with 290.10.

"We are honored to seal victory in the World Cup's final event," Shi said. "We did a great job in front of the home fans and helped China secure a clean sweep of golds."

The 2018 FINA Diving World Cup saw 296 divers from 26 countries and regions taking part across the tournament's seven days.

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