Barnett secures Games berth - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Barnett secures Games berth

By Roz Alderton 05/02/2006 09:55:30 PM Comments (0)

Olympic bronze medallist Steven Barnett has become the first diver to secure a place in the Australian Commonwealth Games team, ensuring that he will bow out from his diving career in Melbourne next month.

The 26-year-old came first out of the Australians competing in the 1m springboard event at the Commonwealth Games diving trials at the Melbourne Sports & Aquatic Centre on Sunday.

While the team of up to 12 divers will not be officially announced until next Sunday, coming first out of the Australians in the event - which was also attended by a number of divers training in Australia from overseas - ensures that Barnett will have a spot on the team.

"I dived quite consistently, not brilliantly, but enough to get me my first spot in the Commonwealth Games team," Barnett said.

"I'm in the team now, so whatever happens from now on I still get to go."

Barnett, whose parents were both also heavily involved in diving, will also compete in the 3m springboard event as well as team up with fellow Athens bronze medallist Robert Newbery in the men's 3m synchro over the coming days.

The 1m springboard event was won by Ken Nee Yeoh of Malaysia with a score of 826.10, second was Germany's Pawel Rozenberg on 762.15 while Barnett scored 754.80.

In other events on the first day of the four-day trials, Olympic medallists Loudy Tourky and Chantelle Newbery easily won their 10m synchronised final with a score of 323.46, while Carlie Gidman and Nicole Ng were runners up with a score of 258.63.

"I was actually really nervous before the final, more nervous than I have been in a very long time," Tourky said.

"The score that we got is very competitive. It will probably be hard to beat for the gold medal (at the Commonwealth Games)."

The pair's performance bodes well for their individual events over the coming days, with selection for the Commonwealth Games team based on the individual and not synchronised events.

"We still have to do a good performance," Tourky said.

On Sunday morning, Brisbane-based duo Sharleen Stratton, 18, and Bree Cole, 22, achieved their best ever score as they won the 3m synchronised event in their first ever national championship.

They managed a score of 321.21 for their five dives, smashing their previous personal best of 297.

"It was a big score for us," Stratton said.

She knew the pair were well on track when they received their first ever perfect 10 for their second dive.

Cole said the one area that still needed improvement was their confidence.

"Probably confidence in trusting that we can do it consistently," she said.

"If we do get in the team, we will have a really good shot for a medal."

Second were Amey Moors-Chantry and Chantelle Newbery with a score of 282.90.

Karyn Blackshaw and Martha Dale were third on 253.65.

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