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Chinese Diver Loses Psych Battle: Team Leader

It was a changed mentality that resulted in the loss of the Olympic men's 3m synchronized event, said Chinese diving team leader.

Greek pair Nilolaos Siranidis and Thomas Bimis emerged as surprise winners in 353.34 points Monday night to take their country's first ever diving gold in the Olympic history after leading pair Peng Bo and Wang Kenan of China scored zero in their last dive to finish the bottom of the field.

Peng and Wang jumped to the lead after third dive and collected283.89 points, over 12 ahead of second-placed Justin Dumais and Troy Dumais before the fifth and last round.

But Wang fell into the water bending while he was doing forward2 1/2 somersaults and two twists and the pair were awarded a "no-dive".

"As long as they could dive into the water head first, we would have won the gold but they entirely failed it. Clearly the athlete thought too much before he made the move," said team leader Zhou Jihong.

"If you think too much, you will not be able to have a good control over your body," said the 1984 Olympic champion in women's10m platform.

"It is what the Olympics is like. The technique is in second place while a tough and steady mind is the decisive element in thecompetition," she said.

Wang admitted that he was too anxious to win.

"I wanted it so much that I got swayed by the thought of gain and loss," said the 24-year-old Olympic debutant.

"The moment I leapt from the springboard, I knew I would blunder. Then I lost control in the air and fell into the water," he said.

The Dumais brothers also flopped at the last moment after worldchampion Dmitri Sautin made a serious mistake.

Germans Andreas Wels and Tobias Schellenberg took the advantage of the favorites' blunders and bagged a silver while Australian duo Robert Newbery and Steven Barnett were third.

(Xinhua News  Agency  August 18, 2004) 

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