Mew Jensen 3m Fukuoka 2023

Mew Jensen ninth as Kothari and Williams make 10m final

21 Jul 2023

Scarlett Mew Jensen improved on her semi-final performance in the Women’s 3m Springboard final to conclude her World Championship campaign in ninth place, as Kyle Kothari and Noah Williams set up finals appearances of their own in the Men’s Platform - and added two more Olympic qualification spots to the British Diving haul in Japan.

Mew Jensen started strong in the 12-strong field at the Fukuoka Prefectural Pool on the penultimate night of diving competition, putting in what would be the second-best dive of her list in the opening round – an Inward 2 ½ Somersaults Pike (405B) getting 7s from the judges and opening her account with a score of 63.00.

She then dropped to ninth the following round, before equalling her first-round score on the third with a Forward 2 ½ Somersaults 1 Twist Pike (5152B). Ultimately, Scarlett closed with her best dive of the day – a score of 65.10 on her Forward 3 ½ Somersaults Pike (107B) seeing the Women’s 3m Synchro silver medallist from earlier in the competition leaving Fukuoka with experience of finishing ninth in the world after her first individual final at this level.

The 21-year-old rounded off her thoughts of the week when speaking after the results were in, looking back on a long and fruitful trip.

“It’s been unreal to me. We’ve been on the road for a really long time, so to come out of it with everything I’ve wanted to achieve is unbelievable", she said.

“We’re all guns blazing to Berlin (for the World Aquatics Diving World Cup Super Final next month), so it’s exciting to see what we can do again, but we know we’re tired and can give ourselves a break for a bit. We’ve done the job so we’re going to have fun with it and see what happens.”

Earlier in the day, Kyle Kothari and Noah Williams secured safe passage to the programme-closing Men's 10m Platform finale, with Kyle making a strong impression on what is his first experience of a World Championships – going one better in the semi-final after qualifying from the prelims in sixth place.

Never dropping below sixth for the entirety of the six-dive event, the 25 year-old made his intentions known as early as the second round of dives – executing a strong Reverse 3 ½ Somersaults Tuck (307C) worthy of 83.30 points to keep him within touching distance of the leaders.

Two solid 75-scoring dives then followed to take him up to fourth, before the two-time European champion then produced the pick of the lot on the penultimate round of dives, thanks to a massive 88.80 score on his Forward 4 ½ Somersaults Tuck (109C), which was the highest scoring dive of the round.  

Kyle Kothari 10m semis Fukuoka 2023
Kothari impresses on his worlds debut

Another 75 score for his Back 2 ½ Somersaults 2 ½ Twists Pike (5255B) on the final dive was enough to qualify him for the final in fifth and secure one of the two Olympic quota places in the event for next year’s Games in Paris with an overall score of 475.60.

Speaking on what has been a special experience for the athlete following a number of injuries which have kept him away from the global stage in previous years, Kothari was happy with his performance.

“Getting to the final was the goal. Tomorrow is a free hit for me, so I’ll just see where I can finish up. The goal today was staying consistent and that’s what I did. It was a really good show of how far I’ve come, especially with some of my bogey dives to ride through the prelims and semis consistently," he explained.

“I’ve been away from home for a month now and the hardest thing is having to wait until these last two days to compete. When you’re trying to get through the rounds, it’s so easy to have one off day and you’re out, it doesn’t matter how good you are. To try to keep up the mental energy, especially after a long trip away from home is the hardest thing.”

Kothari’s compatriot and London British Diving Performance Centre teammate Noah Williams also went well in the semi-finals, booking his place in the final just behind him in sixth.

The 23-year-old took the field out in the opening round – topping the standings with a Back 2 ½ Somersaults 2 ½ Twists Pike (5255B), which merited him a score of 86.40 and a provisional first place standing.

Noah Williams 10m semis Fukuoka 2023
Williams will look to improve further in the final tomorrow

Two more solid dives in the second and third rounds put him just eight points behind regaining that top spot at the halfway stage; an achievement he managed to fulfil on the penultimate round, thanks to his outstanding Armstand Back 2 ½ Somersaults 2 ½ Twists Free (6245D) and Reverse 3 ½ Somersaults Tuck (307C),  efforts that earned him 86 points each.

Knowing that a finals spot was all-but secured on the final round, a drop on his Forward 4 ½ Somersaults Tuck (109C) did little to hamper the ambitions of the 2022 world medallist – as he finished with an overall score of 450.65.

“Sixth is a pretty good result in the semi, I’ll take it for sure”, said Williams after the news of his qualification and the Olympic quota spot were confirmed. “The main business was to get into the final and get that Olympic spot, and me and Kyle have done that, so we can relax tomorrow and enjoy the competition a bit more.

“I was feeling very good, I’d already made the final and got the spot before the last dive, so I was able to try something new, which I can’t normally do. It didn’t work out too well, but it’s good to be able to try it and to have been on such a good score before that last dive.”

For full results and all the info on how to watch the rest of the diving programme from Fukuoka 2023, visit our 'What's On?' page.