Sports

Canadian women earn diving gold

Canadian divers Emilie Heymans and Marie-Eve Marleau upset the favourite Chinese pair to win gold in the women's 10-metre synchro Grand Prix event in Rome.

Canadian divers Emilie Heymans and Marie-Eve Marleau upset the favourite Chinese pair to win gold in the women's 10-metre synchrocompetition in Rome.

Competing for the first time in four years, Heymans and Marleau finished first in the Grand Prix event with 340.68 points.

China's Jingzhen Cao and Ni Chen won silver with 339.66 points, while Americans Mary Beth Dunnichay and Haley Ishimatsu took third at 315.72.

"It's a big rush to get that win," Marleau said. "We did really well. We're a bit surprised but we just dove like we did in practice. We have a tougher list than the other competitors and we took advantage of that."

Heymans, who trains in Pointe-Claire, Que., and Marleau, from Montreal, renewed their partnership three weeks ago.

The pair are preparing for next month's Pan American games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Heymans and Marleau captured the Pan Am title in 2003, but haven't competed together since then.

"We've been improving consistently in training," said Marleau. "We feel we are just beginning. It's a completely different situation from four years ago. For my part, I'm doing much harder dives now and I've also gained a lot of maturity and confidence since [2003]."

World silver medallists Alexandre Despatie of Laval, Que., and Arturo Miranda of Pointe-Claire, Que., placed fourth in the men's three-metre synchro competition.

With files from the Canadian Press

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