Australian diver Maddison Keeney on her way to winning the 1m springboard final at the World Championships in Budapest.
Australian diver Maddison Keeney on her way to winning the 1m springboard final at the World Championships in Budapest. Adam Pretty

Aussie diver strikes world championship gold

DIVING: It was a win years in the making and one that has finally erased the memory of a lost opportunity that has haunted Australian diver Maddison Keeney for two long years.

After a very public and embarrassing flop two years ago when she squandered a chance of world medal success, Keeney nailed it at the Budapest world championships on Sunday to win her maiden world diving crown.

"It's something I have been dreaming of for a long time,” said Keeney, who suffers from nerves at big events.

The 21-year-old Rio Olympian expressed her relief after coming from behind to win the 1m springboard event in Hungary on her final dive in an act of redemption for her 2015 performance.

"It feels incredible, but also very relieving,” Keeney said.

"To be honest, I was relieved as soon as I did my hurdle on the board because I have a lot of bad memories from two years ago that I want to overwrite.

"And so, being able to put a performance on that I could be proud of was the most important thing.

"And I was hoping so much that I would finally be able to win this event after so many attempts.”

Maddison Keeney with her gold medal after winning the 1m springboard final at the World Championships in Budapest.
Maddison Keeney with her gold medal after winning the 1m springboard final at the World Championships in Budapest. Adam Pretty

It was an emotional moment for Keeney who moved from 10th in a field of 12 after the first round to gradually make her way into the gold medal position.

Nailing a forward 2-1/2 somersaults with one twist in her final dive secured her the crown.

"I wanted to redeem myself. I didn't need to doubt myself. I didn't need to think about what happened in the past because I knew that all the training, all the hard work I'd done, would pay off,” Keeney said.

Keeney finished with 314.95 points to beat Russian Nadezhda Bazhina by 10.25.

In other results, Melissa Wu and Domonic Bedggood finished seventh in the platform mixed synchro final and fellow Australians Kevin Chavez and Matthew Carter finished 12th in the men's 3m synchro.



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