Daley picked up men’s synchronised 10m platform silver on Friday night alongside partner James Denny but it was in the individual competition where the 20-year-old was truly expected to dominate.
Morning preliminaries had been a little trouble for Daley with his ‘demon’ dive – the back two-and-a-half somersault with two-and-a-half twists –scoring him only 37.80 points, although he still progressed as the highest ranked diver.
Viewed as his main challenger, 2008 Olympic champion Matthew Mitcham was second but while Daley stepped it up during the evening’s final, the Australian struggled to hit top form finishing fourth to leave the Englishman a clean run at gold.
And Daley took full advantage, scoring an overall total of 516.55 points to retain his title from four years ago in Delhi at a canter.
The nearest diver to him was Malaysia’s Ooi Tze Liang a further 82.85 points behind, although Daley insists he did not worry himself with what other people were doing in the Royal Commonwealth Pool in Edinburgh.
“I try not to think about anybody else. It is a very individual sport. You can only think once you have finished,” he said.
“It was a lot better than the morning session. There are lots of positives I can take out of the final so I am really happy.
“It was really nice to go into the last round knowing I didn’t have to do a last dive to get a medal. It was just about going out there, doing the best dive I could and going out with a bang.
“There’s still a lot more I can improve on. Some of my dives in the final didn’t go quite as well as this morning so I’ve got to make sure I am more consistent. But generally all my dives are starting to come together now and I’m really happy to have something to show for all my hard work.
“I think British diving is in a very strong place. England has topped the medal table and it’s the most medals we have won in a Commonwealth Games. The whole team has done amazingly well and I’m sure there’s a lot more to come.
"It has been a very, very long season. I am going to have a rest. I have not had a day off in four weeks so I cannot wait for a lie-in tomorrow morning.”
© Sportsbeat 2014
- Sports & Recreation
- Matthew Mitcham