Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow aiming for more diving success in London
Published 30 April 2015
Sarah Barrow and Tonia Couch have been diving together since they were just 10 years old. This weekend, they head to the London Aquatics Centre to compete in the latest event of the Diving World Series, where they will be part of a British Diving squad which has enjoyed considerable success in 2015 so far. With less than 500 days to go to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, the duo talks about their form, the importance of a home crowd and inspiring a generation.
2015 has been a good year for the British Diving team so far – the atmosphere in the team must be brilliant?
Sarah Barrow: "We're a great team and we've travelled together for so long now. There are seven of us, and we're used to each other’s company so there’s a great spirit in the team at the moment, especially with Jack Laugher’s gold and the rest of the team getting medals too."
Tonia Couch: "The spirit in the camp is great, especially with Jack winning his gold medal. Everyone is doing well, and coming back to London puts a smile back on everybody’s face."
You come into this event on the back of a bronze in Kazan – are you confident of a medal in London?
SB: "It’s great to come back from Russia with a bronze medal and now it’s time for us to step it up a gear.
"We won a silver medal at this event in London last year in front of a fantastic home crowd, so we’re looking forward to seeing if we can do better this year."
Are you excited about competing in London again?
SB: "There’s always excitement and pressure around competing in front of a home crowd like London with the crowd pumping – it gives us the chance to turn that pressure into something positive."
TC: "It makes you nervous, but the nerves are good. It’s exciting with everyone cheering you and it gives you goose bumps. It makes you want to achieve the best even more than you already do. We’re very excited; we’ve been working very hard and we’re excited to compete in front of such a great crowd to cheer us on."
So far this year, you’ve competed in Beijing, Dubai and Kazan (Russia) – is it hard with such a packed schedule?
TC: "It builds confidence to compete so regularly, but we get into a mind-set where you approach each event individually rather than the season as a whole."
What inspired you to compete when you were young?
SB: "I started diving when I was a kid, but I went to the Commonwealth Games in Manchester in 2002 with Tonia and her Mum and that made me want to take it more seriously.
"We watched the men’s platform competition and it was great! Back then, they were the stars, and we didn’t think at the time that we would be here now.
"It used to be just our parents watching us compete and now the stands are packed with supporters."
Tonia and Sarah are among some of the divers competing at the FINA/NVC Diving World Series at the London Aquatics Centre this weekend. To buy tickets, visit Ticketmaster.