AKUATIK INDONESIA-About 60 divers from the world's strongest nations in the sport - Australia, Canada, China, Cuba, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Malaysia, Mexico, Russia, Ukraine and the United States - will be on-hand at the first meet of the FINA/Midea Diving World Series 2013, organised at Beijing's iconic 'Water Cube' (CHN) from March 15-17.
The stellar line-up that will take part includes many reigning Olympic and World champions. Among men, Chong He from
above) will seek to defend his 2012 World Series title in the 3m springboard.
He is the 2011 World champion in the event and took third at the 2012 Olympic
Games in London.
His main challenger on the springboard will be 2012 Olympic champion Ilya
Zakharov from Russia.
Among those to watch in the 10m platform are 2012 Olympic silver medallist and 2011 world number one Qiu Bo (CHN), Ivan Garcia (MEX), Olympic silver medallist in the synchro event, and Victor Minibaev (RUS).
Winner of a record four consecutive titles,
China's He Zi
has dominated the women's 3m springboard at the World Series since 2009. The
23-year-old, who finished second in the event behind compatriot Minxia Wu at
the 2012 London Games, will contend for a fifth title this year. Wu, who also
won the event at the 2011 FINA World Championships in Shanghai,
and Laura Sanchez (MEX), 2012 Olympic bronze medallist in the event, will
compete in Beijing
In the women's 10m platform, China's Ruolin Chen has remained unchallenged at major competitions since 2008, completing a golden sweep in both individual and synchro events at the last two editions of the Games and FINA World Championships in 2011. The standout performer will vie for a fourth World Series title (and third in-a-row) this year.
The platform events will feature a tough competitive field with Brittany Broben (AUS) and Pandelela Rinong Pamg (MAS), 2012 Olympic silver and bronze medallists, respectively.
The 2013 calendar comprises six stops:
Edinburgh (GBR) from April 19-21
The competition programme for men and women includes 3m springboard, 10m platform, 3m springboard synchro and 10m platform synchro.