Tom Daley (diver)

Tom Daley (diver)

Infobox diver
divername= Tom Daley

fullname= Thomas Robert Daley [cite web |url= |title=Diver Tom Daley, 13, to make Olympic history |accessdate=2008-08-29 |author=Lonsbrough, Anita |date=2008-02-25 | |quote=When Thomas Robert Daley dives… ]
country= GBR
birthdate= birth date and age|1994|05|21|df=y
birthplace= Plymouth, United Kingdom
event= 10 m, 10 m synchro, 3 m
club= Plymouth Diving Club
partner= Blake Aldridge
headcoach= Andy Banks

Thomas Robert "Tom" Daley (born 21 May 1994 in Plymouth, United Kingdomcite news | date=2006 | url= | title=Thomas Daley Biography | | accessdate=2007-02-12 | author= ] ) is a British diver, who specialises in the 10 metre platform event. He started diving at the age of seven, and is a member of Plymouth Diving Club. He has made an impact in national and international competition at an early age. He represented Great Britain at the 2008 Summer Olympics, where he was Britain's youngest competitor, the youngest competitor of any nationality outside of the sport of swimming, and the youngest to participate in a final. [ [ Beijing 2008 official site, Competition Information, Athletes and Teams] , accessed 23 August 2008] In the first post-Beijing 2008 edition of the FINA World Diving Rankings for the ten-metre platform, he reached a new career best ranking of fourth.cite web|url=|title=Fina Diving World Ranking]

Early career

Daley's early diving heroes were Canadian diver Alexandre Despatie, who won gold at the 1998 Commonwealth Games at the age of 13, and British diver Leon Taylor. His father and coach are his main support system.

Daley won his age-group at the British Championships in the 1 m springboard, the 3 m springboard, and platform in 2004, 2005, and 2006.

In June 2004, at age ten, he won the platform competition in the National Junior (under 18) group, making him the youngest winner of that event.

In 2005 he competed as a guest competitor in the Australian Elite Junior Nationals, and placed first in platform and second in 3 m springboard in the 14-15 age group event. He also competed in the 14-15 category at the 2005 Aachen Junior International, placing second in platform and third in 3 m springboard. He met the qualification standard for the 2006 Commonwealth Games, but was not selected for the England team because of his age. [cite web |url= |title=Tom Daley: Set to make a splash at Beijing |accessdate=2008-07-22 |date=15 July 2008 |work=ABC News |] In 2006 he was the under-18 British champion in platform and springboard, and he placed second in the 10 m platform at the 2007 senior British Championships, which were held in December 2006.

International success

In January 2007, at the age of twelve, Daley was given a special dispensation to compete at the 2007 Australian Youth Olympic Festival. The usual minimum age is fifteen. Competing with a persistent thumb injury, Daley won the silver medal with synchro-partner Callum Johnstone in the 10-metre synchronised-diving final.

Later in 2007, he won the senior platform title at the Amateur Swimming Association (ASA) National Championships, the national championship for English divers. That year he began to compete on FINA's international diving circuit of Grand Prix and World Series events, twice finishing fourth in individual competition.

In January 2008 he won the 10 m platform event at the British Championships to become the youngest winner of the senior British 10 m title. [ [ "Daley, 13, close to clinching Olympic place"] , "", 7 January 2008] He also won the 10 m platform synchro title with new partner Blake Aldridge.

Two weeks later he won his first medals on the FINA circuit, winning a bronze in the individual platform competition and a silver in synchro at the Madrid Grand Prix. [ [ "Tom Daley wins two diving medals in Madrid"] , "", 20 January 2008.] Daley and Aldridge won bronze in synchro at the 2008 FINA Diving World Cup. Their score was a British record, and Daley became the youngest-ever male medallist in a world diving event. [ [ "Thomas Daley Delivers with Bronze at the World Cup"] , "", 22 February 2008.] Daley came seventh in the individual competition. In March 2008, Daley became the youngest person to win a gold medal at the 2008 European Swimming Championships, held in Eindhoven. [ "Youngster Daley claims Euro gold"] -] The previous youngest winner was the Scottish swimmer Ian Black, who won a European gold in 1958 at the age of 17.

Daley qualified for the 2008 Summer Olympics in the individual 10 metre dive competition and, following the retirement of 2004 silver medallist Leon Taylor, in the 10 metre platform synchro competition. It was initially claimed by the British media that in competing he would become the youngest-ever male British Olympian, [ [,,2259618,00.html "13 year-old Daley heads to Bejing (sic)"] , "The Guardian", 24 February 2008.] but it was later realised that Ken Lester, cox to the rowing pair at the 1960 Olympic Games, was only 13 years and 144 days old at the time. [ [ "Daley is not the youngest Olympian"] , "Daily Mail", 25 February 2008.] In the Olympic synchronised 10 metre platform competition, they placed 8th, [ [,19528,14935_3964469,00.html "Daley's diving disappointment"] "Sky News", 11 August 2008.] while in the individual 10 metre platform competition he finished 7th. [ [ "Great Britain's diving sensation Tom Daley finishes seventh in 10 m platform final"] "Daily Telegraph", 23 August 2008.]

A month after his appearance at the Olympics, Daley participated in the FINA Junior World Championships for the first time (being too young to enter before). He finished second in the category "B" platform competition (for 14- and 15-year-old boys) with 549.60 points, between China's Bo Qiu (551.85 points) and Dongliang Wu (474.00 points). [ [ "Platform Boys Final - Youth B"] "", 19 September 2008] He was also second in the 3-metre springboard competition in the same category, with 485.25 points, between the two Chinese, Dongliang Wu (510.25 points) and Peng Wang (470.40 points).

Daley won the 2007 BBC Sports Personality of the Year Young Personality award. He is considered a medal prospect for the 2012 Olympic Games in London, and is one of the British Olympians being tracked through the years leading up to London 2012 by the BBC television series "Olympic Dreams". By April 2008 he was on British Diving's list of World Class Podium funded divers , and he was the only under-eighteen diver on the scheme at that time. [,,5157-1-1-122263-0-file,00.pdf] Podium level is the top level of UK Sport's World Class Performance programme. []

Competitive history

*British champion in all events (1 m, 3 m, platform) in 2004, 2005 and 2006 in the relevant age group.with partner Blake Aldridge

Honours and awards

*Named Youngster of the Year by BBC South West in 2005.cite news | date=5 December 2005 | url= | title=BBC honours South West sports stars | | accessdate=2007-02-12 | author= ]
*Short-listed to the final ten for the BBC Young Sports Personality of the Year award in 2006.
*Named BBC Young Sports Personality of the Year 2007.
*Ranked #63 in Time's 2008 edition of 100 Olympic Athletes To Watch [cite web|url=,28804,1819129_1819134_1825972,00.html|title=100 Olympic Athletes To Watch - 63. Tom Daley| accessdate=2008-08-22 |last=Brunton |first=Michael|work=TIME|publisher=TIME, Inc]


External links

* [ Beijing 2008 Profile]
* [ Plymouth Diving Club profile]
* [,8510,5157-189455-206678-44945-284762-custom-item,00.html British Swimming profile]
* [ "Diver Daley Wins BBC Young Sports Personality 2007"] - British Olympic Association
* [,28804,1819129_1819134_1825972,00.html "Tom Daley"] , number 63 on "Time"’s list of "100 Olympic Athletes To Watch"

News articles

* [;jsessionid13BW0BCYAD33HQFIQMGSFFWAVCBQWIV0?xml=/news/2008/02/24/diver/diverpix.xml&site=News "Picture Gallery"] - "Daily Telegraph"
* [ "Thomas tipped for the top"] - BBC Sport
* [ "Stars for 2012"] - BBC Sport
* [ "Olympic Dreams - Tom Daley"] - BBC Sport
* [ "Tom Daley's sights set on Beijing Olympics"] - "Daily Telegraph"
* [ "High-flyer scaling platform to leap into record books"] - "The Times"
* [ "Tom Daley, 13, in at the Olympic deep end"] - "The Times"
* [ "Britain’s youngest summer Olympian"]

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