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Second gold for Laugher in Southend

28th January 2012

Jack Laugher showed his world class talent by winning his second gold medal at the British Gas National Cup in Southend-on-sea.

The final of the men’s 3m Springboard was closely contested between the City of Leeds diver and Chris Mears and in the prelim it was Laugher that had the advantage.

For both of us to score that high here is really promising and shows the depth we have coming through in the 3m.

Laugher opened with his Inward 2 ½ Somersaults piked and scored 75.00 but lay just behind the Southampton diver who scored 76.50 on his Back 2 ½ Somersaults piked.

The lead changed hands throughout the rounds and the competition came down to who scored highest on the Front 4 ½ Somersaults tucked.

Laugher used the high tariff dive in the penultimate round and scored 72.20 to give him a four point lead over Mears.

Mears took scores of sixes to take a total of 70.30 for the dive and gave Laugher the victory.

Scoring his highest domestic total of 460.35, Laugher commented: “That was one of the closest finals I have competed in and it was great. I kept looking at the scoreboard and there was only ever five points in it.

“For both of us to score that high here is really promising and shows the depth that we have coming through in the 3m. Both of our lists are world class now we have the Front 4 ½ and for me it was good to use it in a competition.

"The prelim I was off when I landed the dive and in the final I also overestimated the speed to drop some marks but both of us have the potential for that dive to be special.”

Mears scored 453.65 to take the silver and Callum Johnstone (City of Leeds) took the bronze with 405.70 points.

The women’s 10m Platform showed the depth of talent with five women within touching distance of the victory but it was Southampton Diving’s Stacie Powell that stole the gold.

I just wanted to come here and show what I could do and show everyone that I am still here.

Powell was in the mix with the rest of the field for the first three rounds but her exceptional Inward 3 ½ Somersaults tucked scored her 86.40 points to give her the gold.

The Olympian won the title with a total of 368.20 and said: “I am quite emotional because I haven’t competed at a national competition for about two years because of injury and illness and to come back from that and put in that sort of performance is a big relief.

"I just wanted to come here and show what I could do and show everyone that I am still here.

“I haven’t had any niggles from my previous injuries and to dive and not hurt is where I want to be. It is so good to perform like that at the start of an Olympic year and I feel good.”

Plymouth Diving’s Tonia Couch was next in the rankings as she took silver with a score of 333.65. The fight for bronze was closely fought between Monique Gladding (City of Sheffield) and Brooke Graddon (Plymouth Diving).

Gladding just had the advantage and won bronze by almost one point with a score of 310.45.

Hannah Starling stood up as a last minute replacement for Alicia Blagg in the women’s 3m Synchro and won the final with partner Rebecca Gallantree.

Blagg injured her neck after winning silver in the 1m Springboard and Starling and Gallantree with just one training session under their belt took the title with a score of 291.06.

The City of Leeds divers’ best dive came in the fourth round with their Back 2 ½ Somersaults piked as they settled into the competition.

Silver went to Grace Reid (Edinburgh Diving) and Chloe Hurd (Leeds City College) with 282.21 points and Shanice Lobb and Kayleigh Sinclair (both Plymouth Diving) won bronze with 263.88 points. 

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