The Russian Diving Championships 2019 kicked off in Kazan. The competition programme started with dives from the 3m springboard (men).
Nikita Shleikher won gold (498,70 points) and got qualified for the FINA World Championships to be held in Gwangju (South Korea). Evgeny Kuznetsov ranked second (451,10 points). An Olympic champion (2012) Ilya Zakharov took bronze (408,05 points).
After the competition, Kuznetsov confessed: “My health condition was not very good during my performance. Shleikher did a great job! Health problems are permanent. It is impossible to heal them all. When you start getting in shape, old traumas make themselves felt. I am satisfied with my result – silver medal. Nikita’s dives were fantastic! I am proud to face the fact that we have started training together with him in the same swimming pool. I have made some mistakes in 4th, 5th and 6th dives. But there is time to work on them before the World Championship. Nikita has done his best. It was interesting and challenging to compete with him”.
Kuznetsov made it clear that it’s not worth expecting something from their synchro dives. Zakharov has just recovered. “We have been training with Ilya Zakharov for only one week. But we will make efforts. Let happen what may. Ilya had a serious surgery and missed two months. Two-week period is not enough for preparing the programme, and stretch the leg. Ilya doesn’t feel very well, but he tries not to give up. Not today, not tomorrow, but some time later, he will be on high alert”, added Kuznetsov.
Media Department of Directorate for Sports and Social Projects