PLYMOUTH divers Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow missed out on claiming an historic World Championship synchro medal.
The pair, who bagged two bronzes and a silver at this year’s World Series, finished sixth with 308.40 points in a highly competition women’s 10m final in the Russian city of Kazan.
Couch and Barrow, who were looking to become Great Britain’s first female World Championship medal winners, made a good start and were fourth after the required opening two dives.
However, their medal hopes were hit by a disappointing third round effort which dropped them down to sixth.
The pair, who had finished fourth in the prelims, did beat Commonwealth rivals Malaysia and Australia, but North Korea’s Un Hyang Kim and Nam Hyang Song caused the surprise of the event to finish third with 325.26 points behind winners China and second-placed Canada.
Mexico’s Paola Espinosa Sanchez and Alejandra Orozco Loza were fourth on 310.77 points and Russia’s Ekaterina Petukhova and Yulia Timoshinina fifth in 310.68.
It was the third World Championships running Couch and Barrow had narrowly missed out on a podium finish.
Couch said: “It’s disappointing for that to happen today because it was just a couple of silly mistakes that happened.
“We both could have dived well today and we just didn’t.
“But you’ve got to look at the positives – we had good first two dives which we’ve really worked hard on.”
Barrow revealed afterwards that she has been struggling with stress fractures in her shins.
“We’ve had a bit of a hard few weeks because I’ve had stress fractures in both my shins,” said Barrow. “They’ve been so sore and it’s been hard to train, but I’ve tried as hard as I can.”
She added: “I am a little bit gutted because I know I can dive a little bit better.
“But top six means that we qualify for the World Series and proves we deserve to be competing at that level.”
The duo will get another chance to try and claim a medal when they compete in the individual event on Wednesday.