Australian diving queen Melissa Wu has managed to keep her dreams of a fifth Olympics alive – securing the all important quota spot at the World Championships.
Wu, 31, who has battled several injuries since winning bronze at the Tokyo Olympics, finished the 10m women’s platform semi-final in eighth place and the final in 12th – earning Australia their second quota spot in that event for the Paris Olympics.
It was the first time Wu had competed as an individual since her medal winning performance in Tokyo, with her back injury limiting her to synchronised diving at the Commonwealth Games.
Nikita Hains had previously secured a spot at the Oceania championships last year.
While Wu’s performance was far from the best we have seen her dive – she had made it clear before heading overseas she wasn’t going there to win a medal – the focus was on earning the quota spots.
Diving Australia is so desperate to qualify in as many events as possible in Paris that reigning world titleholder Cassiel Rousseau opted not to defend his title so he could put all his focus on the synchro event.
Wu’s championships didn’t have a fairytale ending with Wu and partner Hains missing out on the quota spot for the 10m platform synchronised event.
Earning that spot was always going to be a tough task with Wu and Hains paired up just weeks before the competition after teenage superstar Charli Petrov was ruled out with a back injury.
Petrov and Wu had proved a formidable pair winning gold at the Commonwealth Games in 2022.
Hains and Wu finished 10th at the championships, only the top four teams were gifted quota spots.
While a favourite and at this stage Australia’s top women’s platform diver Wu will still has one more hurdle to clear before booking her seat on a plane to Paris – the National Titles.
With no synchro spot and just two women able to compete for Australia in the platform event Wu, Hains and Petrov (if fit) will have to battle it out in June for a spot in the team.
Originally published as Olympic Games 2024: Australian diving queen Melissa Wu’s Paris Games dream alive