Aquatics

McCabe heads to Croatia for European Junior Diving Championships

PLYMOUTH’S Euan McCabe will return to international competition this week when he represents Great Britain at the LEN European Junior Diving Championships in Rijeka, Croatia.

McCabe is named in a 12-strong British team for the event, which starts on Monday.

The Plymouth diver was a medallist at the last European Junior Diving Championships back in 2019, but due to the Covid-19 pandemic he has not had chance to compete properly for more than a year.

He did take part in the recent virtual 2021 FINA Diving Grand Prix, where he came fifth in the three-metre springboard final, but the teenager’s last major ‘normal’ event was the British Diving Championships at the Life Centre in January 2020 when he was just coming back from a wrist injury.

He has also not been able to train in his home pool since March last year due to repair work going on at the Life Centre.

But he will be back on the boards for his country in a proper international competition this week when he takes part in the boys’ B one-metre springboard event and the platform competition.

British Diving talent and development manager Julian Bellan, is acting GB team leader for the event. He said: “After a challenging 18 months, where the majority of divers have had little or no pool training due to the limited opportunities during the lockdown periods, it’s great to be in a position we are able to travel to Croatia with a team for the European Junior Diving Championships.

“Throughout lockdowns the squad undertook virtual training with their coaches and the national team. The national squad programme was called live@5 and delivered virtual training online via the zoom platform for 18 months with over 150 bespoke training sessions including virtual ballet, yoga, technical and physical workouts.

“Ahead of travel we’ve come together at the Olympic pool Stratford for final preparations before heading out to Rijeka in Croatia. This event comes only 10 weeks after many of the divers returned to water-based training in April, and although the aspirations of the team remain high, the team has had challenges and a number of divers are unable to travel due to injuries in recent weeks.

“This team of 12 divers is the smallest team to attend the Euros in over a decade, with the overriding majority of the squad in the younger 14-16 age group category. It is hoped the squad will develop as we work towards the World Juniors, which take place in Kiev this coming December.”

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