TIJUANA, Mexico – Two-time Olympic medallist Emilie Heymans of St-Lambert, Que., couldn’t capitalize on an early lead and took fourth spot on women’s 10-metre tower on Friday to open the first of three stops on the FINA World Series diving circuit.
Paola Espinosa of Mexico won the gold medal with five solid rounds of diving totalling 412.55 points. World champion Xin Wang of China was second at 380.20 and her compatriot Chen Ruolin, the World Cup champion, was third at 371.60.
Heymans started strong earning big scores on her back two and half and her armstand dive to lead after two rounds. However she struggled on her next two dives to drop into fourth. A solid inward dive to end the competition wasn’t enough to get her back in the medals.
Espinosa’s victory capped a big day at home for Mexico. Yahel Castillo opened the competition with a surprised win on men’s three-metre.
Meanwhile, China which swept all 24 gold on the circuit last year, won one of four events on Friday with world champions Guo Jing Jing and Wu Min Xa earning top spot in women’s three-metre synchro. Konstantin Khanbekov and Oleg Vikulov of Russia were the victors on men’s 10-metre synchro.
Heymans was the only Canadian in action Friday. She’ll compete again on Saturday on women’s 10-metre synchro with Marie-Ève Marleau of Laval, Que. Blythe Hartley of North Vancouver and Jennifer Abel of Laval are also entered in women’s individual three-metre.
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