China reigns supreme in FINA Diving World Series in Japan
Sports Scene

The invincible Chinese juggernaut continued to roll on unchallenged in the second day of the inaugural leg of the FINA/CNSG Diving World Series, currently underway in Sagamihara, Japan.

In the women's 10m platform, China's 14-year-old upcoming star Zhang Jiaqi overcame some early jitters after a shaky start in the first two dives and went on to come back strongly in the last three combinations. Zhang eventually clinched the gold medal in 393.30 ahead of Canada's Meaghan Benfeito, who won the silver in 385.10. World Series champion in 2018 and Zhang's formidable compatriot, Ren Qian, had to settle with the bronze in 371.40. 

An elated Zhang said after her triumph, "there were good rounds and bad rounds. Actually, I am very happy with this result. I think I'm very competitive, and my concentration and effort paid off today."

The Chinese duo of Cao Yuan and Xie Siyi, who were the winners of Friday's synchronized event, were pitted against each other this time in the final of men's 3m springboard. Britain's Jack Laugher joined the battle to make it a thrilling three-way final.

Xie Siyi of China competes during the Men's 3m Springboard semi-final on Day 2 of the FINA Diving World Cup Sagamihara at Sagamihara Green Pool in Sagamihara, Kanagawa, Japan, March 2, 2019. /VCG Photo

Xie Siyi of China competes during the Men's 3m Springboard semi-final on Day 2 of the FINA Diving World Cup Sagamihara at Sagamihara Green Pool in Sagamihara, Kanagawa, Japan, March 2, 2019. /VCG Photo

However, it was Xie who had the last laugh as he grabbed gold in 548.80 while the silver went to Cao, who scored 529.40. Laugher was a distant third with 469.25. 

"This result is good. But there were problems with the take-off in some dives. I am planning to train this aspect in order to fix it," said Xie. 

The last event of the day was the mixed 10m platform synchro and China's new duet Lian Junjie and Si Yajie had a cake walk as they won in 360.33. 

The Russian duo of Nikita Shleikher and Iuliia Timoshinina won silver in 334.59 and local stars Minami Itahashi and Kazuki Murakami settled for the bronze in 325.50. 

Chinese divers have picked up seven gold medals out of the seven finals contested in the three-day event so far. 

(Cover: Zhang Jiaqi of China competes during the Women's 10m Platform semi-final on day two of the FINA Diving World Cup Sagamihara at Sagamihara Green Pool in Sagamihara, Kanagawa, Japan, March 2, 2019. /VCG Photo)