Wendy hopes for happier 'reunion'

WENDY Ng hopes to put to rest the disappointment of last year's World Cup results when she resumes her partnership with Nur Dhabitah Sabri in the women's 3m springboard synchro at the World Championships in Budapest tomorrow.

The two Commonwealth Games-bound divers are the last two Malaysians to see action on the final day of competition at the Duna Arena.

It will be the first time, after more than a year, the two are competing as a pair.

They savoured their finest outing together in bagging silver at the Jakarta Asian Games in 2018, but missed out on qualification for the 2020 Olympics after coming in 15th in the preliminary round in the World Cup in Tokyo in May last year.

Wendy, who hopes to make amends for that miss, can draw inspiration from Dhabitah, who is bubbling with confidence after winning bronze in the women's 10m platform synchro with Pandelela Rinong on Thursday.

"Sixth or probably seventh place would have been enough for us to earn a quota slot for Malaysia at the Tokyo Olympics," said Wendy.

"But our first three dives were not clean and the chance to compete in the springboard synchro at the Olympics was over.

"We are determined to do better this time. It will be tough to fight for a medal but what's important is to see where we stand against our Commonwealth rivals, especially those from England, Australia and Britain.

"If we can do this, we have a fighting chance to snatch a medal at the Commonwealth Games," said 28-year-old, who placed eighth with Dhabitah in the event at the last world meet in Gwangju, South Korea in 2019.

Wendy partnered youngster Ong Ker Ying and won gold for Malaysia in the event at the Vietnam Sea Games in May.

Diving coach Li Rui, however, will be drawing on experience in getting Wendy and Dhabitah back for the 3m springboard synchro for the Commonwealth Games.

Chang Yani-Cheng Yiwen should continue China's proud winning streak by successfully defending the women's 3m springboard title as they look to take over from two-time Olympic champions Shi Tingmao-Wang Han.

Germany and Australia are also expected to be in the running for a podium finish.

Australia will field their veteran pairing of Maddison Keeney-Annabelle Smith, bronze medallists in the event at the 2016 Rio Olympics, while Germany will count on Lena Hentschel-Tina Punzel, also bronze winners at last year's Tokyo Olympics.

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