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Waterfield and Mears secure British Gas National Cup Title

5 Feb 2010

Olympic silver medallist Peter Waterfield and his club-mate Chris Mears took victory from Callum Johnstone and Ashton Hall in the men’s 3m Synchro on the first day of the British Gas National Cup 2010.

The Southampton Diving pair started the competition with strong required dives and then scored well on their first optional dive, the Front 3 ½ Somersaults piked, but suffered from a missed Inward 3 ½ Somersaults tucked as they fell down the leader board.

The missed dive gave Johnstone and Hall (both City of Sheffield) an opportunity to catch the leaders and they went into first place with one round to go.

But Waterfield and Mears capitalised on Johnstone and Hall’s miss in the final round to take the gold.

Waterfield and Mears scored 350.07 to win the title and afterwards Mears said: “This was our first competition together and although we have performed the list better we are happy to have won that event today. We train together and we are looking to continue the partnership through 2010.

“It is really good to be back competing and to be alongside someone like Pete is great. He always gives me tips on how to improve. It is a great experience to be up there next to an Olympic silver medallist.”

Johnstone and Hall won the silver after missing the gold by just five points. They took their medal with a total of 345.78. Harrogate District’s Oliver Dingley and Jack Laugher won bronze with 342.12 points.

City of Sheffield’s Nick Robinson-Baker won his first individual title for almost two years in the men’s 1m Individual final after beating his club-mates to the gold medal.

The Olympian has spent the past two years focussing on his synchro lists and since the World Championships in the summer he has been learning new individual dives.

Robinson-Baker had a shaky prelim but looked a lot stronger in his final and won with a total of 376.90 points.

“This is my first individual title in one and a half years and it feels fantastic,” Robinson-Baker said. “It is good to know that I can perform on my own and not just when I have my synchro partner next to me.

“My prelim wasn’t great but I just knew I had to get through to the final. My performance in the final was much better and I am happy with how I performed.”

Tom Owens (City of Sheffield) won silver with a score of 333.65 and Callum Johnstone (City of Sheffield) took bronze after scoring 307.05.

Alicia Blagg took a surprise victory in the women’s 1m Individual when she beat Olympian Hayley Sage to the gold medal.

The 13-year-old was competing consistently throughout this morning’s prelim and went into the final ranked in first place. She began the competition with an Inward 1 ½ Somersaults piked and scored well to put her in the lead.

The City of Leeds diver won the competition with a score of 216.95 and commented: “That is my first senior title and I am really happy to have the gold medal. I went into the event wanting to enjoy it and have fun and I did.

“I finished first this morning and that made me a little nervous for the final but I spent the break trying to relax.”

The silver medal went to Hayley Sage (Crystal Palace) with a score of 215.70 and Harriet Bullough (City of Sheffield) won bronze after finishing with 213.35 points.

New pairing of Rebecca Gallantree and Stacie Powell won the women’s 10m Synchro with a promising performance in their first competition together.

The Olympic divers scored well on the required dives to put them in a good position as the divers moved on to their optional dives.

Gallantree (City of Leeds) and Powell (Southampton Diving) won the gold with a score of 270.72.

“The last time I competed in the 10m Synchro was in 2006 and it was good to compete in it today,” Gallantree said. “We started training back in September and it was great to use our list at a national competition.”

“We have worked together to help improve our technique and the changes that have been made have been good. Today we did well. I think our synchro was good but I think we could have scored better. We are a new pairing and we are hopeful for the future of the partnership.”

City of Leeds diver Suzanne Collins and Jenny Cowen won the silver with 264.54 points and Emily Alderman and Rachel Holland (both Southampton Diving) won bronze in 234.90 points.


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