Nerveless Lois and Andrea dive to Worlds synchro bronze

6 Feb 2024

Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix and Lois Toulson made it successive Women's 10m Synchro medals at World Championships after a dramatic final round secured them bronze on day five in Doha. 

The pair made history in Fukuoka last summer when they claimed British Diving's first Worlds medal in a women's event by taking synchro silver from the platform - and they were in similarly impressive form seven months on to make the podium again. 

Solid with their two required dives, Andrea and Lois laid their medal foundations by scoring 67.50 points for their third-round Forward 3 1/2 Somersaults Pike (107B). Sat third after that, they moved down to fourth with one round to go, although at that stage, four pairs were separated by fewer than two points. 

Both Mexico and Ukraine's duos laid down statement dives of their own in what would be the tightest of finales, meaning Andrea and Lois needed a clutch closing Back 2 1/2 Somersaults 1 1/2 Twists Pike (5253B) to take the bronze. They duly delivered, straight eights for synchronisation earning them 74.88 points and seeing them finish on 299.34, behind only China's Chen Yuxi and Quan Hongchan in gold and the silver medallists, Democratic People's Republic of Korea duo Kim Mi Rae and Jo Jin Mi 

Having competed from the platform on three successive days, the GB pair have showed brilliant resilience across both individual and synchro events, with Andrea winning bronze in the 10m Platform and Lois placing sixth. And above everything, they put it down to one factor - enjoying the top-quality competition.

"We both knew going into the last dive that it needed to be a good one, but we didn't have the pressure of having to get an Olympic spot or things like that that some of the other countries had to deal with, so we just tried to enjoy it," said Toulson.

"We know we can put all of our dives down. We haven't done our best performance today, but after three long days of competing, we are still really proud of it."

Spendolini-Sirieix added: "We have learned that we are definitely strong enough, it's more than possible. We gave our all - and I really enjoyed this competition!

"We went in and we said, 'we're not going to have any pressure, there's no stress, let's just go and enjoy it', and we really did enjoy it. As Lois said, the performance wasn't the best, but we know this is a starting point - it's only up from here. We can work harder and get better.

Lois Toulson and Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix Doha 2024 [GettyImages]
Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix (left) and Lois Toulson

"The partnership is honestly great. We don't get to train together that much, but when we do train, we enjoy it, and it's so fun to have someone that you can enjoy competitions with. I love diving alongside Lois!"

And with back-to-back Worlds synchro medals now in the bank, how does Lois reflect on the first 18 months of this partnership?

"When we first became a partnership, we always knew it was possible. And as Andy keeps doing so well in her individual and in synchro together, it means I'm really happy standing alongside her, and it gives me confidence as well, being next to such a good diver and such a good friend as well," she added.

Earlier in the day, Ross Haslam put in a strong showing to come through a 70-diver prelims in the Men's 3m Springboard, qualifying fourth into Wednesday's semi-final. 

With each round lasting not far short of an hour, Ross showed great composure to deliver a consistent list, with his second and sixth dives both tallying 76.50 from the judges for scoring 7.5s, leaving him on 429.05 overall and safely among the top 18.

Jack Laugher just missed out on that ranking, finishing 20th overall after failing his fourth-round dive. The three-time Olympic medallist bounced back brilliantly from that with his final two dives, scoring 79.20 for his closing Back 3 1/2 Somersaults Tuck (207C) - but his overall tally of 363.10 was eight points shy of 18th place. 

Wednesday brings with it the semis and final of that 3m Springboard contest, as well as Yasmin Harper and Scarlett Mew Jensen combining in the Women's 3m Synchro final.