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Oliver Dingley leads the Irish Diving team in Tokyo for Olympic Games Qualifier from May 1st – 6th.
Swim Ireland’s divers have departed for Tokyo, Japan for their delayed final Tokyo 2021 Olympic Games qualifying opportunity at the FINA Diving World Cup.
The qualification event, taking place at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre, will run across six days from May 1st – 6th with places for the Games available in the 3m Springboard and 10m Platform.
The event was due to take place in April, but was cancelled at the last minute and, thankfully, rescheduled to start this weekend.
Rio 2016 Olympic Finalist Oliver Dingley leads the team with Clare Cryan, Tanya Watson and Ciara McGing all aiming to become the first Irish female diver to qualify for an Olympic Games.
Dingley and Cryan will compete in the 3M Springboard, while Watson and McGing will be entered in the Platform event.
Divers securing a semi-final (top 18) place in each event will automatically qualify a place for their country at the Games. This is the second and final qualification event for the Games, the first, the FINA World Championships in 2019, allocated 12 qualification places.
National Diving Coach Damian Ball said: “The divers are all as fit, healthy, and prepared as possible, considering the current situation. The mood is positive around the poolside and we are all excited about the challenge ahead. We have selected a team with both youth and experience, which highlights our strong intention to qualify for this year’s Olympics while also preparing for a team for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.”
Rio 2016 Olympian Oliver Dingley said: “I’m just looking forward to getting out and going to do some diving at a competition. We haven’t competed in over a year and a half now.
“You never want to be overly confident, but I’m in a good frame of mind – physically fit, mentally fit as well – so really it’s six dives, one dive at a time and I could be at the Olympic Games. Really it’s about keep your feet firmly on the ground, being patient and trying to relax as much as possible.”
Clare Cryan, among the trio aiming to become Ireland’s first female Olympic diver, said: “We’ve had a bit of an uncertain few weeks with the competition being cancelled, and being unsure about when it’s being rescheduled, so to have a competition again, and know that we are going is really exciting now.
“We’ve all been working so hard, and with everything going on with COVID, we’ve all had our own different battles to be facing. We’re all looking good and feeling sharp, so it’s just really exciting that we can go and show what we’ve been working on.”
Tanya Watson, who competes in the 10m with Ohio-based Ciara McGing, said: “I’ve really enjoyed training in Dublin with Clare and Ollie. I haven’t had a chance to train with them this long ever, so that’s been great. Training’s been really good – I’ve been able to do all my 10m dives pretty consistently in training. I think overall training has been really consistent here, from weights to the pool.
“I’m most looking forward to being able to compete again and seeing everybody that we haven’t seen in over a year.”