The Chinese are the favorites in, well, every event. But don't tell that to the Canadians, Australians, Germans and Russians, who all have former medalists competing in Beijing. Here are our predictions and why.
Women's Three-meter Springboard
GOLD: Wu Minxia (China)
SILVER: Guo Jingjing (China)
BRONZE: Chantelle Newbery (Australia)
Women's Synchronized Three-meter Springboard
GOLD: Wu Minxia / Guo Jingjing (China)
SILVER: Sharleen Stratton / Briony Cole (Australia)
BRONZE: Ariel Rittenhouse / Kelci Bryant (United States)
Women's 10-meter Platform
GOLD: Wang Xin (China)
SILVER: Chen Ruolin (China)
BRONZE: Emilie Heymans (Canada)
Women's Synchronized 10-meter Platform
GOLD: Wang Xin / Chen Ruolin (China)
SILVER: Melissa Wu / Briony Cole (Australia)
BRONZE: Nora Subschinski / Annett Gamm (Germany)
Men's Three-meter Springboard
GOLD: Qin Kai (China)
SILVER: Dmitri Sautin (Russia)
BRONZE: Troy Dumais (United States)
Men's Synchronized Three-meter Springboard
GOLD: Wang Feng / Qin Kai (China)
SILVER: Alexandre Despatie / Arturo Miranda (Canada)
BRONZE: Dmitri Sautin / Yuriy Kunakov(Russia)
Men's 10-meter Platform
GOLD: Sascha Klein (Germany)
SILVER: Zhou Luxin (China)
BRONZE: Gleb Galperin (Russia)
Men's Synchronized 10-meter Platform
GOLD: Lin Yue / Hue Liang (China)
SILVER: Mathew Helm / Robert Newbery (Australia)
BRONZE: David Boudia / Thomas Finchum (United States)
Guo Jingjing is the favorite, but has she let her press clippings get to her head and have her squabbles with her coaches compromised her training? It's hard to imagine the Chinese not finishing one-two, but who will win. Chantelle Newbery is definitely a medal threat, even if she just had a baby 22 months ago. Other contenders will be Tania Cagnotto (Itay), Sharleen Stratton (Australia), Blythe Hartley (Canada), Yulia Pakhalina (Russia) and Christina Loukas (United States).
It is probably a forgone conclusion that Wu and Guo will win gold, but it will be a battle for the remaining two medals. Other contenders include the German team of Ditte Kotzian and Heike Fischer, who have experience and international results. Also look for Olena Fedorova and Alevtyna Korolyova (Ukraine), Yulia Pakhalina and Anastasia Pozdnyakova (Russia), and Laura Sanchez and Paola Espinosa (Mexico).
The only flaw, if you can call it a flaw, in the Chinese divers here is their age. Wang and Chen are both 15 and the Olympic pressure could effect the two, but they are very, very good. To add to that pressure is the fact that the Chinese have not won platform gold since Fu Mingxia in 1996. If they falter, look for Paola Espinosa (Mexico), Anja Richter (Austria), and up and coming Australian Melissa Wu. Laura Wilkinson has been inconsistent lately, but she only has to come through with three more competitive lists of dives. If she does, she will definitely compete for a medal.
As with the women’s platform, the Chinese are the team to beat. Also watch Paola Espinosa and Tatiana Oritz (Mexico), and Mai Nakagawa and Misako Yamashita (Japan). The American team of Haley Ishimatsu and Mary Beth Dunnichay are probably four years away from competing for a medal.
Qin Kai could get upset by his own teammate, He Chong. The easy choice here would be to pick the Chinese one-two, but Sautin is such a survivor you can’t bet against him being in the medals. Troy Dumais might just get it done this time. He is determined, but he must stay consistent. Other to look for include Alexandre Despatie (Canada), Yashel Castillo (Mexico), Ken Terauchi (Japan), Chris Colwill (United States), and Aleksandr Dobroskok (Russia).
Yep, the Chinese will probably win this one also. Despatie and Miranda will give them a run for their money and Dmitri Sautin, who won the European Championships with Yuriy Kunakov, would also be a good bet! Two dark horses in this event will be the American pair of Chris Colwill and Jevon Tarantino who have shown they can compete, and the Australians Robert Newbery and Scott Robertson. Newbery has a knack for being able to sneak into the medals - three times to be exact, and that experience could prove to be valuable.
Who knows! This is the one event in which the Chinese might not be the overwhelming favorite. In the last two major competitions – the world championships and world cup, the winner has NOT been a Chinese diver. Sascha Klein won the 2008 FINA World Cup and Galperin the 2007 World Championships. This will definitely be an interesting event. The U.S. also has a strong contingent with David Boudia and Thomas Finchum, both of whom should be in finals and contend for a medal. And don't forget about Australian Matthew Mitcham, the other Chinese diver Lin Yue, and 14-year-old Thomas Daley who defeated Klein at the 2008 European Championships.
The Chinese are once again the favorites, but Mathew Helm and Robert Newbery already have Olympic experience and a bronze medal to show for it. Boudia and Finchum are another serious threat to the Chinese. They have shown that they can compete internationally and if they can relax in the Olympic pressure cooker, who knows! Other strong teams include Patrick Hausding and Sascha Klein (Germany), Blake Aldridge and Thomas Daley (Great Britain), and Gleb Galperin and Dmitriy Dobroskok (Russia).
Top American Divers
Top Contender Profiles
Olympic Diving Main Page