Duo narrowly edge North Korean team for top prize
Canada’s Meaghan Benfeito had a big day at the FINA Diving World Series event in Montreal on Saturday. The three-time Olympic medallist won gold alongside Nathan Zsombor-Murray in the mixed 10-metre synchro event.
The Canadian pair posted a score of 322.08 to narrowly edge the North Korean team of Hwa Kim Mi and Myong Hyon II by 1.5 points.
“It didn’t feel like an event at first because I’m at my home pool and it feels like I’m just training,” said Zsombor-Murray, a native of Pointe-Claire, Que. “But I started to get a little nervous when the event started.”
Iullia Timoshinina and Nikita Shleikher of Russia were third with a score of 299.82.
“The key was to really try to make him realize that he needs to have fun to dive well,” said Benfeito, who added that Zsombor-Murray may have finished the competition better than she did.
Earlier in the day, Benfeito picked up an individual bronze medal in the women’s 10m platform event with a score of 354.65. The Chinese duo of Qian Ren and Yajie Si finished first and second, respectively.
The Montreal native qualified for the final after placing first in her semifinal group, while fellow Canadian Celina Toth did not advance after placing fifth.
The top three divers in each semifinal group earned a berth in the final.
Benfeito’s two medals comes a day after finishing fourth alongside Caeli McKay in the women’s 10m syncro event. The pair were coming off a silver medal showing at the Commonwealth Games earlier this month.
On the men’s side, both Philippe Gagne and Francois Imbeau-Dulac advanced to the men’s 3m springboard final after placing second and third, respectively, in their semifinal group.
However, both were shut out from the podium. Imbeau-Dulac was fifth with a score of 448.45 while Gagne was sixth after scoring 430.55.
China’s Yuan Cao and Siyi Xie took home gold and silver while Russia’s Ilia Zakharov won bronze.