Gold Coast (Australia) (AFP) – England’s Tom Daley overcame a hip injury that nearly ruled him out of the Commonwealth Games to win 10m platform synchro gold with partner Daniel Goodfellow on Friday.
The Olympic bronze-medallists faltered on their final dive to give England team-mates Matthew Dixon and Noah Williams a chance of snatching gold.
But Dixon and Williams came up 5.82 points short and had to settle with the silver medal, leaving Daley and Goodfellow with a victory that had seemed unlikely just days ago.
Daley, who has also battled concussion in recent weeks, pulled out of the individual 10m platform over his hip injury and revealed that he was also uncertain for the synchro event.
“Two days ago I was not sure if I was going to be able to compete with my hip and I have been doing every kind of recovery you can imagine, compression, ice, everything I could do to get to the start line,” said Daley.
“Up until a couple of days ago I was nearly pulled out of the competition for safety reasons because you can’t go up in the 10m with a hip that doesn’t function all that well.
“That’s why this means so much because I really put everything into that synchro competition to get to the start line.”
With his fourth Commonwealth gold in his third Games, Daley, 23, went one step further than Glasgow 2014 when he took synchro silver with James Denny.
He produced the goods when it mattered, nailing a difficult back three-and-a-half pike on the fifth dive as the winners finished with 405.81 points to Dixon and Williams’ 399.99.
“I have been struggling in training all week and didn’t do one good one and it’s really been frustrating me,” Daley said.
“I gave it everything I had and used the experience of competing to do what I could.”
Goodfellow praised Daley’s resilience to get through the event after his health issues, especially after their 90.72 on the fifth dive.
“This medal because of those reasons means a lot and it just shows what a great competitor he is,” Goodfellow said.
“He’s been struggling with that dive all week and he managed to pull out the best one he’s done in competition.”