NSC to probe plummeting standard in diving

PETALING JAYA: The National Sports Council (NSC) are concerned that not even one male diver qualified for the Olympics.

Pandelela Rinong contributed the only medal for Malaysia in the Diving World Cup in Tokyo when she won the women’s 10m platform individual event but all others flopped, especially the male divers in the week-long diving competition, which also double up as the final Olympics qualifying event.

None of the men divers reached the top 18 semis, which would have ensured automatic qualification for the Olympics.

Mohd Syafiq Puteh finished 23rd in the men’s 3m springboard individual and will have to wait until next month when the final entries for the Olympics are confirmed to see if he gets in.

If he fails, Malaysia will have no male representation in the Olympic diving stage for the first time.

NSC director general Datuk Ahmad Shapawi Ismail said they would conduct a post-mortem with Malaysia Swimming.

“The performances of the men’s divers were most worrying, especially the seniors who did not give us any reason to cheer as they did not even win one slot, ” said Shapawi.

“It was a mixed outing in Japan. We’ve never thought that Malaysia would struggle to qualify in the men’s individual events unlike previously.

“Other countries also had no competition for so long but we have to credit Pandelela and Cheong Jun Hoong for achieving their objectives.”

Jun Hoong joined Pandelela as the two divers for the women’s 10m platform individual at the Olympics after she finished on top in the preliminary competition at the World Cup.

Pandelela-Leong Mun Yee also placed fourth in the women’s 10m platform synchro event.

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