Diving: Jack Laugher sets sights on Rio Olympics medal after shining in Russia

Jack Laugher.
Jack Laugher.

Ripon’s Jack Laugher is turning his thoughts to the Rio Olympics after making history by becoming the first British diver to win more than one medal at a World Championships.

The 20-year-old followed up his 3m synchro bronze with Chris Mears by claiming bronze in the three metres springboard final with a score of 528.90.

He finished behind China’s gold medallist He Chao (555.05) and Russia’s Olympic champion Ilia Zakharov (547.60) in Kazan, Russia.

Laugher’s achievement makes him the first Briton to make the podium in an individual springboard event at a World Championships and only the second, after Tom Daley, to win an individual medal.

“I’m really happy to get a world bronze and the second medal of this trip,” said Laugher.

“It was a rock solid competition. Everyone was bouncing off each other and you see those mad scores like we’ve had today.

“The past year-and-a-half has been absolutely fantastic. I got a bronze at the World Cup in Shanghai, followed by two Commonwealth medals as well, then being overall World Series champion. And a bronze here as well – I’m getting more confident with every competition I do and I’m still young.

“I’ve learned a lot from this and moving on to Rio (the 2016 Olympics), hopefully I can put those experiences and lessons into plan. Hopefully, it’s going to snowball and make me a better diver and a better competitor.

“I’ve been training hard throughout this year and it’s time for a break, but I’m really proud of what I’ve done this year and everything has gone the way I wanted it.”

Great Britain also won gold in the mixed team event through Rebecca Gallantree and Daley, who expressed his “massive relief” at qualifying for the 2016 Olympics by easing into the 10m platform final.

The Olympic bronze medallist finished third in the 10m platform semi-finals in solo competition on Saturday.

China’s defending champion Qiu Bo and World Cup champion Yang Jian claimed the top two berths, but Daley’s score of 524.70 secured Great Britain a quota place at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Daley recovered from a poor second dive – a mistake on his ‘twister’ – to take the bronze medal in the 10-metre platform final.

He could not keep pace with defending champion Qiu Bo of China or American David Boudia, who claimed gold and silver respectively, but Daley was still pleased to have medalled.

“I’m really happy with that bronze,” he said. “I did make it as hard as possible for myself with that second dive.”