China complete flawless clean sweep of diving golds at FINA World Championships
2022-07-04 09:51     Source : CGTN

China's diving "Dream Team" took home 13 gold medals from the 13 available in Budapest as Yang Jian defended his men's 10-meter platform title on Sunday night to bring the curtain down on their 2022 FINA World Championships campaign in spectacular fashion.

Japan's 15-year-old Tamai Rikuto gave everything in his bid to haul in the experienced Yang, who uncharacteristically botched his third dive and fell from second to seventh in a hard-fought final.

Though Rikuto nailed a sensational 99.90 forward 4.5 somersaults tuck to take the top spot, the 28-year-old Yang held his nerve and notched up two flawless somersaults pike to close in on his young rival.

The Chinese veteran saved the hardest one for his last dive, dethroning Rikuto with a scintillating 102.50 forward 4.5 somersaults pike, which had 4.1 degrees of difficulty.

Rikuto ended up bagging the silver with a total score of 488.00 points, 27.33 behind Yang Jian. The Olympic silver medalist's compatriot Yang Hao also showed admirable composure to overcome a slip, coming from behind to complete the podium with 485.45.

There was less drama in the women's 3m springboard synchronized final earlier in the day. Chen Yiwen and Chang Yani powered to the world title with 343.14 points after topping the scoring chart in all five rounds. 

The silver went to Sayaka Mikami and Rin Kaneto, who scored 303.00 points and secured Japan's best-ever finish in diving events at the world champions. Australia's Maddison Keeney and Anabelle Smith rounded off the top three with 294.12.

Another perfect day for China means that the Asian powerhouse won 13 diving golds at Budapest 2022, the most in a single tournament.

It was also the third time a single nation has swept all the diving golds at the world champions. The U.S achieved the feat by winning all four golds in 1982, and China replicated the achievement by clinching all 10 golds in 2011.

Editor: Zheng Sihui