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Freddie Woodward wins first European medal

Freddie Woodward reached the European podium for the first time with 3m Synchro bronze alongside James Heatly in Kiev.

Competing at his third European Championships, the City of Sheffield diver scored 395.61 with Scotland’s Heatly.

The Brits narrowly beat Germany’s Patrick Hausding and Stephan Feck (395.61) to join pairs from Russia (427.71) and Ukraine (426.96) on the podium.

And Woodward admitted they hadn’t been expecting to land British Diving’s fifth medal of the meet.

“We are a little bit surprised by this medal,” said Woodward, who finished 11th in the individual 1m Springboard.

“It was a really strong competition with 12 teams. We rarely had such a big number within the past years.

“Before the last dive we knew that a medal for us could be possible. My partner James risked a look on the scoreboard and we noticed this could be a chance for third place. And finally it worked out with the last dive.”

Brits add international success to national honours

Woodward and Heatly have formed an effective partnership this season, combining for bronze at the National Cup in February then silver at the British Championships earlier in June.

But they eclipsed their scores from both competitions in Ukraine, saving their best two dives for the final two rounds.

A 77.52 for their reverse 3 ½ somersaults tucked in the fifth round put them in the medal hunt for the final round, lying less than six points behind Hausding and Feck.

And while the Germans scored 70.38 for their last effort, the Brits held their nerve to score 78.54 for their forward 2 ½ somersaults, 2 twists piked to claim the third spot on the podium.

Image credit: Deepbluemedia/Giorgio Scala