PETALING JAYA: Diver Ooi Tze Liang can afford to smile despite failing to reach the men’s 3m springboard individual final at the Diving World Cup in Shanghai.
Tze Liang achieved a career-best performance by making the semi-finals in the individual springboard and now fancies a shot at getting a first-ever Commonwealth Games medal in Glasgow.
He finished 14th in the top-18 semi-finals (423.85) while team-mate Ahmad Amsyar Azman was placed 17th (379.10) in the competition won by China’s Cao Yuan (524.10) on Friday.
The Penang-born Tze Liang is among three male members in the Malaysian diving squad heading to Glasgow after the World Cup meet.
Although he will be participating in all five events – 1m and 3m springboard and 10m platform individual as well as 3m springboard synchro and 10m platform synchro, it is the springboard events which give him hope of winning a medal.
At the Shanghai World Cup, the 20-year-old finished as the third best Commonwealth diver behind silver medallist Jack Laugher of Britain (507.00) and Grant Nel of Australia (427.95).
“The men’s springboard and platform individual events are very competitive. It will be hard but I have a chance to fight for a medal if I can improve on my consistency.
“I did better in the preliminaries compared to the semis and I need to cut down on my mistakes,” added Tze Liang, who was the toast of the Malaysian diving squad at the Myanmar SEA Games last year where he won three golds and one silver.
Tze Liang is unable to just focus on his pet events because of the lack of depth in the men’s squad.
“Seniors like Yeoh Ken Nee and Bryan Nickson Lomas have retired, so the challenge is on the few of us to catch up quickly.”
Malaysia have one medal to show so far in this year’s biggest competition for diving.
Leong Mun Yee-Cheong Jun Hoong took silver in the women’s 10m platform synchro on Wednesday.
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