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Daley defends Commomwealth Games title

Bbc
Monday, August 04, 2014

England's Tom Daley comfortably defended his 10m platform Commonwealth Games title with a classy performance.

The 20-year-old finished with a score of 516.55 to take gold in the event he also won at Delhi 2010.

A superb back 3.5 somersault in his penultimate dive virtually ensured gold for the 2012 Olympic bronze medallist.

Ooi Tze Liang of Malaysia won the silver medal with a score of 433.70, while Canada's Vincent Riendeau took the bronze with 429.25.

England's James Denny, who had partnered Daley to silver in the 10m synchronised platform event, was sixth while fellow countryman Matthew Dixon, aged 14, finished ninth.

Earlier, their compatriot Hannah Starling claimed bronze in the women's 3m springboard final, won by Australia's Esther Qin, with Canada's Jennifer Abel taking silver.

Alicia Blagg and Rebecca Gallantree of England were seventh and 10th, while Scotland's Grace Reid came ninth.

Afterwards Daley said his sights were now on the Rio Olympics in 2016. "There's every possibility that I can mix it with the Chinese now," he said.

"I wouldn't mind if I never beat the Chinese until 2016. You've only got to do it once and you've got to do it when it counts.

"Hopefully they'll be able to see that I'm coming to get them."

Daley overcame his problems with his so-called "demon dive" a back 2.5 somersault, 2.5 twist routine which was his second dive of the night, and held the lead from the outset.

He struggled with the dive in the morning preliminaries, and was awarded just 37.8, but after a score of 64.80 in the final he looked comfortable with his subsequent attempts.

"It was a lot better than this morning, I got into it a little bit quicker," Daley told BBC Sport.

"The back twister was better, but still not as great as I wanted it to be. The front four-and-a-half was not as good as it was this morning, but there are still lots of positives and I'm really happy to retain the title."

England's 14-year-old Matthew Dixon, who like Tom Daley is from Plymouth, won European junio bronze earlier this year . The issues had first occurred at London 2012, when he was put off by a camera flash while executing the dive.

Another misfire in April meant he missed out on a medal at a World Series event in London, and he has also enlisted the help of a psychologist to address the issue.

Having started the final with a score of 94.50 for an armstand back triple somersault, Daley stayed ahead and the 102.6 earned for a brilliant back 3.5 somersault on the fifth of six dives virtually guaranteed the gold medal.

Australia's Matthew Mitcham, who had been expected to challenge Daley for the gold, struggled and finished in fourth place with a score of 420.00.





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