Amazing Andrea wins platform gold on penultimate night

4 Feb 2023

Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix came out on top of a breath-taking Women's 10m Platform final, while James Heatly and Ross Haslam took the Men's 3m Synchro gold on day three of the British National Diving Cup. 

Spendolini-Sirieix took her first individual title of the year at the first time of asking in the Women’s 10m Platform final, although she did not have it all her own way , as her Dive London Aquatics teammate Robyn Birch sent the Royal Commonwealth Pool crowd into raptures with a 76.80-scoring Armstand Back 2 Somersaults 1 ½ Twists Free (6243D) to take her into first place after the first round.

The top three remained the same as the preliminary session, with both City of Leeds’ Lois Toulson and Spendolini-Sirieix closing the gap at the end of round two, as the latter’s Inward 3 ½ Somersaults Tuck (407C) scored her 73.60 points to get her right back into contention for the gold medal.

The halfway mark continued the trend of tense competition between the three front-runners, but it was Birch who maintained her first position after round three, thanks to a 75.20-scoring Inward 3 ½ Somersaults Tuck (407C) of her own, with the top three divers separated by just six points at that stage.

It was the penultimate round where things really started to intensify, thanks to a massive Forward 3 ½ Somersaults Pike (107B) from Birch, which put her three points ahead of Spendolini-Sirieix, and 11 ahead of Toulson, heading into the final round.

Robyn Birch Day 3 BNDC
Birch applied the pressure as the rounds progressed

he final round proved pivotal for all three athletes, as Spendolini-Sirieix produced a clutch fifth dive and took a 10-point swing out of Birch, thanks to a Back 2 ½ Somersault 1 ½ Twist Pike (5253B) which earned her the highest individual score of the event (78.40), to clinch the gold and finish on a score of 354.40.

Birch, whilst performing consistently well throughout the event, had to settle for the silver medal – finishing just behind on 346.20, with Toulson’s final effort seeing her checkout just behind the pair for bronze on 334.90.

The Men’s 3m Synchro Final provided a different element of excitement for the crowd, as Heatly (Edinburgh Diving Club) and Haslam (City of Sheffield Diving Club) provided a synchro masterclass for those in attendance.

The pair were in the lead from the off, as their required dives went as planned, before an Inward 3 ½ Somersault Tuck (407C) on the third round began to distaTnce them from the competition – scoring them 68.34 points.

Their lead was extended through both the fourth and fifth rounds, despite a solid penultimate attempt from Todd Geggus (Southend Diving) and Oscar Kane (Dive London) – their Reverse 2 ½ Somersaults Tuck (305C) proving fruitful, as it earned them 52.92 points to see them second with one round of dives to go.

Heatly Haslam Day 3 BNDC
Heatly and Haslam never lost the lead as they won in style

It was Heatly and Haslam who closed out the competition, though; their Forward 4 ½ Somersaults Tuck (109C) providing them with their highest score of the event (72.96), to see them finish on a massive 364.20.

Geggus and Kane also finished with their highest scoring dive, as their Forward 2 ½ Somersaults 1 Twist Pike (5152B) saw them end on 296.76 points and the silver medal, with Connor Lano (Southend Diving) and Lucas Clayton (Dive London) taking the bronze (272.88 points).

The winning pair spoke after the event, with Heatly particularly happy with their performance.

“We’re really happy with it. It’s our first time doing synchro together in seven years since we were juniors, so it’s been a long time. We haven’t had many sessions together before this competition so I’m really pleased with the outcome," said the home diver.

“I’ve really enjoyed myself this weekend with everything that’s gone on this past year, so I’m really happy. We’ve got a long training block ahead of us before we start our push for the summer.”

Haslam was also pleased with what was a momentous medal, as he continues his comeback from injury.

“It’s been a very quick turnaround with us. We haven’t managed to have much training together outside of the event, so it’s only been this week that we’ve been able to have two sessions, with one being today before the event," he added.

“I’m pretty happy with it, it was a semi-solid list, but I think that both of our individual dives will come off on a synchro level as we continue.

“It’s been a pretty rough ride for me the last couple of years through injuries and other things but to be back performing like this and training well, we’ve had a big mindset change over the past year which should hopefully enable us to continue to do well at competitions like these.”

For the full list of results, access to livestream footage from the competition and more, follow our live updates page.

Heatly Haslam Podium BNDC Day 3