Chinese star Wu Minxia scores record sixth gold at Barcelona
BARCELONA - Agence France-Presse
China’s Wu Minxia (L) and Shi Tingmao (L) react after their final dive. AFP photoChinese star Wu Minxia claimed a record sixth gold medal in the 3m synchronised diving event at the world championships in Barcelona on July 20.
Olympic and world champion Wu partnered Shi Tingmao to the title as the pair piled up 338.40 points with Italy landing silver courtesy of 307.80 points for Tania Cagnotto and Francesca Dellape. Canadian pair Jennifer Abel and Pamela Ware took bronze with 292.08 points as the Chinese served up due warning they intend to emulate the 10 golds they managed in the 2011 championships back home in Shanghai.
For Wu it was a record sixth world 3m synchronised springboard title while the triumph was China’s seventh on a roll in the event.
Wu and 1m springboard world title-holder Shi were far too strong as they brushed off a bold challenge from recently crowned European champions Cagnotto and Dallape, who actually led after the opening round before the favourites underlined their top dog status at the Montjuic Municipal Pool.
In all, Wu now has amassed 13 world championships diving medals, seven of them golds.
“These are my seventh world championships, but this time I have a new partner,” said Wu.
“This gold medal proves that our effort paid off. I am now the leader of the group, and I can bring them my experience.” Despite also winning gold in the event at three successive Olympics -- 2004, 2008 and 2012 -- the 27-year-old said she is not thinking about retirement.
“I know that most girls at my age normally think about other things in life, like having a family, I need more time to think about that,” said Wu, who also collected 2012 Olympic gold in the 3m springboard.
In open water swimming, Tunisia’s Oussama Mellouli added the 5km world title to his 10km Olympic crown.
Danita takes gold
American Haley Danita Anderson won a photo-finish to claim gold in the women’s 5km event to improve on the silver medal she gained at the Olympics in London last year.
It was a second world title for Mellouli who also triumphed at the 1500m in the pool in Rome in 2009. He beat Canadian Eric Hedlin into silver with Germany’s Thomas Lurz winning bronze.
“Honestly, this was just as painful as the 10km,” Mellouli told AFP.
“The changes of pace, the buoys, it was tough but I am very happy.” Anderson pipped Brazilian Poliana Okimoto by just two tenths of a second with Ana Marcela Cunha, the current 25km world champion, also from Brazil, third. Russia’s Svetlana Romashina won the synchronised swimming solo technical gold.