Even with a mistake that led to their lowest scoring dive, Wang Zongyuan and Xie Siyi couldn’t be caught.
The Chinese led all the way in winning men’s the 3-meter synchronized springboard on Wednesday, giving the diving powerhouse its third gold medal of the Tokyo Olympics.
Wang and Xie finished with 467.82 points in their Olympic debuts. They hugged each other and their coaches, and shed tears in celebration.
“We were really feeling relieved,” Wang said through a translator. “Three hours ago, I was an unknown athlete. Now I can say I’m winner of the Olympics.” Wang, who is 19, views the 25-year-old Xie as a big brother.
“He has experience, he’s very steady, always very calm, self-controlled,” Wang said. Xie said of his partner: “He’s willing to learn and he’s a fast learner.”
Wang and Xie gave China a gold medal in the only event it didn’t win five years ago in Rio de Janeiro. The Chinese earned seven golds at the 2016 Games.
The U.S. earned its second diving medal in Tokyo. Andrew Capobianco and Michael Hixon finished second with 444.36 points. It’s the same color medal that Hixon won five years ago in Rio de Janeiro with a different partner.
American teammates Delaney Schnell and Jessica Parratto finished second in women’s 10-meter synchro on Tuesday.—AP