Welcome to Doha! Is this your first World Aquatics Masters Championships?

Not my first. I've been diving Masters since I was old enough to dive Masters, which in Australia was when I was 19. My first world Masters was when I was 28 in 2015.

That was the first combined World Aquatics Championships and World Aquatics Masters Championships. What was that experience like?

It was such an amazing experience. It was quite a small event being the first combined one and I was the only person from Australia diving. I got to meet all these awesome people from all different countries and walks of life. I really got to know the community which was amazing. I then missed a few having children, and then came back to Masters competition at Fukuoka last year.

Having just watched a couple of your dives, you’re going all out as well! Did I just see you doing a handstand dive on the 10m platform?

Actually, you just saw me do the first session I've had back on platform since I smashed my face into the platform two weeks ago. So that was why I was so excited after the dive. I'm feeling good now.

Image Source: Doha 2024 Organising Committee

Will you be doing the springboards as well – and if so, do you have a favourite event?

I’ll be doing the 1m Springboard, 3m Springboard and Platform. I've always said the 10m Platform is my favourite, but I definitely think the older I'm getting, the more scared I’m getting!

Aside from that terrifying 10m platform, what is it about the World Aquatics Masters Championships that keeps you coming back?

The Masters family is a real family. The people you meet each time, you get to know them a little bit more each time.
By Eliza Cole

 Plus there is a lot of sightseeing and a lot of restaurants! Like the experience here in Doha. It’s so pretty, so unique, and not like anywhere else I've been before. We went to Souq Waqif last night and it was so special and not somewhere I would ever have gone if it wasn’t for these Championships.

Team Australia is a diverse mix here in Doha, especially the age groups. What is the experience like being part of a team and a competition where competitors can range from the age of 25 to the 100 year-old diver?

It's really interesting. On our team we've got three divers with about a thirty year age gap. And that is just part of the Masters experience that makes it so unique and enjoyable. Being able to socialise with people of different ages, from different backgrounds, and different parts of the world. It’s fun and such an important life learning experience as well.

I’ve been told you’re referred to as the ‘diving doctor’! Any truth to this nickname?

Haha… yes I’m a General Practitioner back in Australia. Actually, there are multiple diving doctors here in Doha!

There are only three Australians here in Doha but next year will be the closest World Aquatics Masters Championships to home since they were in Australia at Perth 2008. What sort of encouragement would you give to people who may have dived as a junior and given it up, or to those who are just keen on getting into the sport?

I think anyone back home would tell you that I am the biggest advocate for masters competitions. Personally, it has been so important for me to have something of my own to learn, develop and pursue. It's also helped me to stay fit and healthy. 

And while I love competitions, it is not just about competing. It is about doing something you love, training, and challenging yourself.
By Eliza Cole

Plus the adrenaline rush when being here is pretty good as well!