THE Southampton Diving Academy’s new generation is celebrating a haul of seven medals at the British National Cup in Southend.
Sarah White, 16, won the junior (18+under) silver medal in the platform following a consistent list of dives. Lewis Coleman-Smith, 16, performed well on the springboards, taking English junior third place on the 1m and fourth on the 3m.
The other medals were won in the synchro events. Lauren Grinstead,19, and Gemma McArthur, 15, paired up for the first time to take bronze in the 10m platform, while 3m duo Maddie Angell, 14, and Mollie James, 16, took junior bronze (also finishing fourth in the seniors) at their first tournament together.
The men’s 10m platform saw a surprise outcome with Lewys Oakley, 15, and Charlie Wood, 20, taking gold. They pipped the favourites to the post when Junior European Individual champions Matty Lee, 15, from Leeds and Dan Goodfellow, 17, from Plymouth unexpectedly failed their last dive, a result that saw the SDA continue its unbeaten run in the event.
Charlie Wood made the 10m platform final, finishing in an impressive fourth place. All eight divers are members of the newly formed SERASA (South East Regional Amateur Swimming Association) talent squad and are coached by Lindsey Fraser, Xinde Zhang and Jack Clewlow at The Quays Swimming and Diving Complex.
Fraser, the SDA’s director of coaching, was delighted with the outcome. “This is a tribute to the hard work and commitment of the whole team and their coaches,” she said. “I’m looking forward to this new generation of divers from the South coming through to fill some of the shoes left empty by our top divers who have recently retired, including Olympic silver medallist, Peter Waterfield (pictured left).”