China makes clean sweep at Diving World Series

Updated: Mar 18, 2013, 08:48 AM IST

Beijing: The Chinese diving team dominated the FINA Diving World Series Beijing leg with a clean sweep on Sunday.

The FINA Diving World Series features six legs, namely Beijing, Dubai, Edinburgh, Moscow, Guadalajara and Mexico City. The opening Beijing leg is the first major international competition the Chinese team attended after the London Games.

"Most people care more about how many titles we win, but for us, we care more about the performance of our divers," said Zhou Jihong, the leader of the Chinese team. "Our focus of the World Series is to give more chances to the young divers."

As Zhou said, the Chinese team didn`t disappoint the home fans.

London Olympic champion Wu Minxia changed her 3m springboard synchro partner from He Zi to young teammate Shi Tingmao, and the new pair won the title with ease. In the women`s 10m platform, two-time Olympic champion Chen Ruolin paired up with teenager Liu Huixia, and they also pocketed the gold.

In the men`s 10m platform synchro, Beijing Olympic champion Lin Yue and his new partner Chen Aisen claimed the title, while the men`s 3m springboard also saw newly paired veteran divers He Chong and Qin Kai triumph.

Qin Kai also won the 3m springboard as he avenged his Olympic loss against Russian Illya Zakharov Saturday.

Zakharov turned over China`s defending champion He Chong and Qin Kai to win men`s 3m springboard at the London Olympic Games, but this time in Beijing he was inferior to the two Chinese divers.

Olympic champion He Zi asserted her dominance in women`s 3m springboard by winning with a 60.45 points margin to silver medalist Jennifer Abel of Canada, while the bronze medal was snatched by Tania Cagnotto of Italy.

Chinese two-time Olympic champion Chen Ruolin won the women`s 10m platform title Sunday while her teammate Lin Yue and Chen Aisen took a 1-2 finish in the men`s platform event.

"Some of our top divers are absent this time due to injuries," Zhou said. "So we are not at our best."

"We will try hard to increase the difficulty degrees of our dives to prepare for the Rio Olympics," she added.