DOHA, Qatar – The highlight of Day 1 of the Doha World Aquatics Championships was when Tom Daley made three of the six dives in the mixed team event to claim his first world championship title in seven years. The victory came just six months after British knitter, father and four-time Olympian ended his retirement. After celebrating on the podium with his three mixed-team compatriots, Daley, 29, said, “I was so terrified…but it feels good to be back out there competing again.”

In the women’s 1m final, Alysha Koloi took gold ahead of Britain’s Grace Reid. But the top qualifier, Maha Eissa (or Maha Amer as she is known at the University of Florida), claimed Egypt’s first diving world championship medal, a bronze. Amer/Eissa was leading after three rounds until she botched her easiest dive in round four, only to rebound on her fifth dive to capture the bronze, 0.10 point behind Reid.

For details and athlete reactions, read on.

Mixed Team

Image Source: Andrea Spendolini Sirieix and Thomas Daley during the Mixed Team Finals on Day 1 (Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

In a contest that featured nearly every combination of individual and synchronized diving on 3m and 10m boards, Mexico pushed Great Britain hard in the mixed team event, hoping to upgrade its 2023 silver medal. The two nations traded first place for five of the six rounds.

Mexico’s roster was the same as it was in 2023 and, as expected, Randal Willars, 21, threw the hardest dive of the competition, a forward 4½ on the 10m platform with a 4.1 degree of difficulty. He nailed it in the penultimate round, scoring 98.40 points to put Mexico ahead of Great Britain by 0.75 points.

But Great Britain’s final dive featured Daley, 29, and 19-year-old Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix, the 2022 junior world champion on 10m. Together, they performed a mixed synchro inward 3½, ripped it, and waited to see if Mexico could top Great Britain’s 421.65 total with an identical dive.

Willars and his partner, Gabriela Agundez, fell a bit short but still helped Mexico take silver for the second consecutive year, 8.85 points behind the Brits. No other teams broke 400 points at Hamad Aquatic Center on Friday.

Afterwards, Mexico’s Aranza Vazquez said, “This medal is bittersweet to me. We know we had a good chance to earn gold. It was a close fight. Each of the three top teams could have won.”

Australia claimed the bronze, aided by the 10m world champion Cassiel Rousseau and two-time 1m springboard world champion Li Shixin.

Li, who was 10 days away from his 36th birthday said, “You know, I am a little bit old. I know I should retire. But as young athletes are still taking me as a role model, it gives me new power to stay in the competition.” He admitted, however, that he wasn’t sure if he could keep diving after this Olympic year due to injuries and balancing training with his family.

Germany, after taking bronze last year, finished fourth in Doha, 15.30 points away from the podium.

Women’s 1m final

Image Source: Tsutomu KISHIMOTO/World Aquatics

Forty-seven athletes started this event. China was not among them. Friday night’s final featured the top 12 after the qualifying round, led by Maha Amer, a 2016 Olympian who competed for the University of Arkansas and transferred to the University of Florida where she is now pursuing a Master’s degree as a professional diver. Amer was seeking Egypt’s first world championship medal in diving. In 2023, Amer placed fifth on 1m, so an improvement was entirely possible.

A silver or gold would have been a first for Egypt in any aquatic sport at the world championships.

Image Source: Tsutomu KISHIMOTO/World Aquatics

Amer, 24, led after three rounds despite a little difficulty in the second round where she performed the hardest dive of the competition (a reverse 2½ with a 3.0 DD). It didn’t score as well as her first dive, but it earned enough points to stay in the lead.

In round four, however, Alysha Koloi of Australia, 22, jumped from third place into the lead with a reverse 1½ with 1½ twists. She held the top spot even as Grace Reid of Great Britain did her best dive in the last round to catapult from sixth place into silver-medal position.

Image Source: Australia's Alysha Koloi in full flight at the Hamad Aquatics Center (Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

But it was close. Koloi won gold with 260.50 points. Reid was just 3.25 behind her, followed by Amer who trailed Reid by merely one-tenth of a point.

“I am in a big shock,” Koloi said of winning gold in her world championship debut. “This is a big surprise. I am stoked. This medal on my neck is unbelievably heavy. It is absolutely gorgeous.”

As for the 1m silver, Reid said that her first individual world championship medal felt “a little bit surreal but honestly, I’m just delighted. I’ve had a bumpy couple of years. I am finally finding my feet and my rhythm again.”

Image Source: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Amer, meanwhile, was simply blown away.

“Being so close to a gold medal tonight was like out of this world,” she said. “The crowd in the pool rooted for me a little bit too much! That definitely added so much stress [but] we are in an Arab country and it made sense. They wanted me to win and they made me very-very happy.

With bronze in hand, Amer added, “I’ve been dreaming about this moment a lot. I wish I had a little bit more confidence in my diving abilities, but I think staying humble is better.”


Two more diving world titles will be determined on Saturday in Doha: in mixed 10m synchro platform and men’s 1m springboard.