July 17, 2017 - China reasserted their supremacy on the
diving boards with victories in both finals on Day 3 of the Budapest World
Championships to take their golden tally to three and soften the blow of two
defeats the previous day.
Peng Jianfeng narrowly won
the menís 1m final from team-mate He Chao and Italyís Giovanni Tocci, while Ren
Qian claimed her second gold in the Duna Arena, winning the womenís 10m synchro
with Si Yajie a day after claiming Chinaís first title of the championships
with Lian Junjie in the mixed 10m synchro.
Day 2 had ended with two
defeats, Australiaís Maddison Keeney winning the womenís 1m and Evgeny
Kuznetsov and Ilia Zakharov of Russia the menís synchronised 3m final.
China won 10 of the 13
titles at the last edition of the world championships in Kazan in 2015.
Womenís 10m synchro
Olympic champion Ren Qian
captured her second gold medal in two days when she partnered former world
champion Si Yajie to victory in the womenís synchronised 10m final, prevailing
over pairs from DPR Korea and Malaysia, who collected silver and bronze
Sixteen-year-old Ren, who
won the individual platform crown at the 2016 Rio Olympics, had claimed her
first Budapest gold medal alongside Lian Junjie in the mixed 10m synchro, the
first diving event of the programme.
Ren and Si, the 2013
individual platform world champion at 14, stretched ahead of their closest
rivals in the last two rounds of the five-dive final to win by just over 16
points from North Koreans Kim Min-rae and Kim Kuk-hyang.
Kim Kuk-hyang beat Ren to the 10m gold at the
2015 Worlds in Kazan for her nationís first-ever aquatics world title. For Kim
Min-rae this was her second Budapest medal, following a bronze in the mixed 10m
synchro with Hyon Il-myong.
Malaysiaís Jun Hoong Cheong
and Pandelela Pamg, the Olympic silver medallists, matched the Chinese pair in
the first round and narrowly led them in the second, performing consistently to
claim the bronze.
Ren and Si notched an
aggregate 352.56 points from their five dives, with the DPR Korea duo second on
336.48 and the Malaysians third on 328.74.
Canadaís Meaghan Benfeito,
who bagged world silver in 2013 and 2015 as well as 2016 Olympic bronze
alongside Roseline Filion, could not quite add to her medal hoard, finishing
fourth on 315.78 with new partner Caeli McKay.
Peng Jianfeng and He Chao
scored a one-two victory in what ultimately turned into a close battle in the
menís 1m springboard final to bring China their second diving title of the 17th
FINA World Championships.
Peng appeared to be heading
for a clearcut win as he led by 34 points from He Chao with two dives to go.
But he faltered in the penultimate round and in the end less than five points
separated the top three as Italyís Giovanni Tocci hurled down a powerful
challenge to the leading pair with his last dive.
He Chao, the 3m world champion in 2015, edged
past the 22-year-old Italian, who had been outside the top three for the first
five rounds, leaving Peng Ė diving last but still with a 10-point lead Ė with
one dive to decide it. Pengís forward 2-1/2 somersaults with twist was not his
best but it was just enough for gold. Peng won with a six-dive aggregate of
448.40 points, with He Chao taking the silver on 447.20 and Tocci the bronze on
It marked a gratifying
return to the podium for 25-year-old He Chao after Olympic disappointment last
year when he failed to qualify from the preliminary round of the 3m event. And
it brought China back to customary winning ways after defeats in the womenís 1m
(won by Australiaís Maddison Keeney) and menís 3m synchro (Russiaís Evgeny
Kuznetsov and Ilia Zakharov) on Day 2 when Ren Qian and Lian Junjie scored the
sole Chinese win in the mixed 10m synchro.
China have now won the menís 1m world title
nine times out of 12, including the six most recent editions.
The last non-Chinese winner
was Canadaís Alexandre Despatie in 2005. Germanyís Patrick Hausding, Olympic 3m
bronze medallist at the 2016 Rio Games, had been in the top three throughout
the first five rounds but the 28-year-old European 1m silver medallist could
not withstand Tocciís challenge and finished fourth, five points adrift of the
European champion Illya Kvasha of Ukraine, 1m
silver medallist at the last two world championships, failed to make the final
after a botched second dive in the preliminary round. Kvasha, however, gained
consolation on Day 2 when he shared bronze with Oleg Kolodiy in the menís
synchronised 3m final. Kolodiy finished sixth in the 1m final.