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Blagg and Gallantree finish sixth in thrilling 3m Synchro final

20 July 2013

British divers Alicia Blagg and Rebecca Gallantree finished sixth in a thrilling 3m Synchro final on the opening day of the 2013 World Championships in Barcelona.

The Brits were in the medal chase throughout the final before eventually finishing just 7.35 points off the podium on 284.73

Blagg and Gallantree were the model of consistency in the final as experienced pairs waivered around them, the Brits lying fourth after the second, third and fourth round of dives.

"They're world class athletes that win medals and it's nice that we were so close today - hopefully next time we'll make the next step," - Rebecca GallantreeThey came into the final round less than two points shy of third placed Malaysia, before Blagg and Gallantree also felt the weight of the pressure and slipped out of contention with a 56.73 for their final effort.

China’s Wu Minxia and Shi Tingmao (338.40) won gold ahead of Italy’s Tania Cagnotto and Francesca Dallape (307.80) with Canada’s Jennifer Abel and Pamela Ware (292.08) ultimately taking bronze.

But having failed to reach the final at the last Worlds two years ago, the Brits can take plenty of encouragement from their competitiveness in Barcelona, having also won two World Series silvers and European bronze this season.

And with a top six finish in Barcelona sealing an invitation to next year's World Series, Gallantree insisted they would use their result as motivation to continue to improve next season.

"We’re happy with the placing," said Gallantree. "That’s the best we’ve got a world event before and it qualifies up for the World Series next year because the top six qualify for that which is great.

"We could’ve performed a little bit better I think and dived a bit better but it was just the way it went today.

"It’s no easy thing to get a medal at a World Champs – they’re world class athletes that win medals and it’s nice that we were so close today. Hopefully next time we can make that next step and get there to the podium."

Chris Mears and Jack Laugher were also in action on the opening day in Barcelona, competing in the preliminary of the 1m Springboard.

Mears finished the higher of the two, scoring 333.30 for 16th place, while Laugher scored 327.20 to place 19th.

Both Brits will return in their prefered 3m Springboard on Thursday while Mears also holds the chance of a final spot with Nick Robinson-Baker in the Tuesday's 3m Synchro.

"That was perfect really - just what I wanted," said Mears. "That was a really steady list and it puts me in great stead for the 3m later in the week.

"Neither Jack nor I came here to win the 1m. The more important competition for me is the 3m and the 3m Synchro event."

Laugher added: "That was good to shake the cobwebs off. I haven't competed internationally much this season because of school so it was good to get used to that and competing outside as well.

"I dropped my first dive but came back well after that. It wasn't a brilliant score but I don't mind too much."

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