2012 London Olympics, Diving: China's Qiu Bo Tops Men's 10-Meter Platform Prelims
-- August 10, 2012
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LONDON, England, August 10. CHINA's Qiu Bo, the 2011 world champion, produced a near-faultless display from the 10-meter platform to qualify in top spot for Saturday's semifinals at the 2012 London Olympics.
Qiu, making his first appearance at the Aquatics Centre of these Games, led a field of exceptional quality where 32 starters were reduced to 18, with a six-round total of 563.70 points.
Qiu, 19, finished more than 30 points ahead of older teammate, Lin Yue who showed why he won gold in the synchronized 10m platform in Beijing to end the night second with 532.15 points.
Sasha Klein of Germany, the world bronze medallist, dove consistently well to finish third while Martin Wolfram also of Germany was the surprise fourth-place finisher. The 20-year-old is competing at his first Games and did not progress beyond the preliminary round at last year's world championships in Shanghai.
Also safely through were Mexico's German Sanchez Sanchez and Ivan Navarro Garcia in fifth and sixth respectively. The pair already has a silver medal each from the synchronized 10m platform earlier in the Games. Both performed the hardest dive in the world, the inward four and a half somersaults in the tuck position which has a degree of difficulty of 4.1.
Home favorite, Tom Daley looked nervous as he started his individual campaign with his first round dive, a back two and a half somersaults with two and a half twists which was only good enough for 18th after round one.
Daley, one of the faces of these Games, looked off-form as his penultimate dive, a back three and a half somersaults pike, only scored 39.60 points, one of the lowest of the night. The score briefly saw Daley drop to 16th before going through in 15th.
There was no happy ending for Pete Waterfield of Great Britain competing in his fourth Games. The Athens 2004 silver medallist in the synchronized 10m platform, had a poor evening finishing 23rd and failing to progress.
Matthew Mitcham of Australia, the 2008 Olympic champion, also looked off his best as he finished ninth. Mitcham has struggled with injury since Beijing but said before the Games started he had used the time to work on the essential mental preparation diving requires.
Points from the preliminary round are not carried forward to the semifinal in the same way points from the semifinal do not count in the final. At each stage divers start their six dives from zero.
China has won six of the seven diving events completed. The men's 10m platform, which concludes on Saturday 11 August, is the final event.
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Results: 2012 London Olympics: Men's 10-Meter Platform Prelims
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Courtesy of: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports