Daley and Williams secure superb silver and Olympic spot

8 Feb 2024

Tom Daley and Noah Williams' first international competition as a pair ended in memorable fashion, as they secured World Championship silver in the Men's 10m Synchro and confirmed an Olympic quota spot in the process.

Tom and Noah's outstanding display also made sure of a new British Diving record, with the synchro silver becoming Britain's seventh medal of these World Aquatics Championships - surpassing the previous best of six from Budapest in 2022, with two days still to go. 

A stunning third-round Inward 3 1/2 Somersaults Tuck (407C) got the scoreboard - and the packed crowd at the Hamad Aquatic Centre - going after two finely-executed required dives, as the GB pair notched 84.48 points for their effort and made a statement in their bid to ensure Team GB would have the chance to defend the Olympic title won by Daley and Matty Lee in Tokyo three years ago. 

Across the entire six-round competition, Tom and Noah never deviated from silver-medal position, strengthening their grip on a medal and Olympic place with each passing dive, before bringing the house down with their closing Forward 4 1/2 Somersaults Tuck (109C), their highest difficulty dive bringing 83.25 points from the judges and seeing them finish on 422.37 overall.

That placed them behind champions Lian Junjie and Yang Hao of China, and ahead of Ukraine pair Oleksii Sereda and Kirill Boliukh in bronze-medal position.

And despite plenty being on the line, Daley - whose old school headteacher was among those cheering from the stands - said everything felt natural as he and Williams marked their maiden outing on the global stage together in style.

"I was terrified when I woke up this morning, terrified eating breakfast, and at lunch! But once I got into the competition, and being with Noah, I kind of relaxed and was like, 'ah, this is what it feels like'," he said.

"We knew that we had to try to qualify a spot for the Olympics, which we succeeded in - but I think we went into it more fighting for the medals rather than thinking about the spots. We're super happy, and it's my first ever silver medal at a World Championships, so I've got the set now!

"Today was what it all came down to, whether I was going to be able to be fit enough to dive with Noah in the first place, and then be able to actually come in the top qualifying spots. That's mission accomplished so far, and now it's about staying fit and healthy to get to the start line [in Paris], so now the real work starts."

Williams added: "We came into today's competition just trying to get an Olympic spot, and we did that and got a medal as well, so we're very happy with the performance. We obviously haven't trained too much together, but I think it has come pretty naturally to both of us.

"Tom said aboutseeing if he's fit enough to dive with me, it's definitely the other way around! I just try to do my best next to him, he's obviously a great diver, so the better I dive, we'll hopefully be able to be pushing for gold." 

Earlier in the day, Grace Reid came through another lengthy prelims session to take her place in Friday's semi-finals of the Women's 3m Springboard. 

Fresh from her 1m Springboard silver on day one - a result that made British Diving history as the first individual global medal in a women's event - Grace stayed composed throughout the prelim, with each of her first three dives scoring upwards of 60 points from the judges.

That laid the foundation for a comfortable progression as part of the top 18, as she finished sixth of 52 divers. Behind her, Yasmin Harper could not quite follow Grace into the semis as she placed 23rd, a day after winning Women's 3m Synchro alongside Scarlett Mew Jensen.