Dingley decamps to D15 for Rio bid

by Gazette Reporter

NAC-BASED diver Oliver Dingley last Sunday won his first event as an Irish competitor when beating multiple world champion Tom Daley at the Irish Open in the National Aquatic Centre in Dublin.
He won the 1m men’s final in dramatic fashion, seeing off the sport’s most famous face by 1.05 points with final forward 2½ somersaults in the last round of action, drawing a rousing reception from the home supporters.
Dingley, who won a bronze medal for Great Britain at last year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, is set to become Ireland’s first Olympic diving representative since London 1948 when he steps out on to the board in Rio next year
The seeds were sown for the 22-year-old’s move to declare for Ireland after he was not selected for the British diving team that went on to medal at London 2012, and he has since moved to the National Sports Campus in Dublin 15 with his coach of 16 years, Damian Ball.
He said: “The heartbreak [of not being selected for London 2012] spurred me on and in 2014 I made another dream of mine a reality – to win an individual medal at the Commonwealth Games.
“After the Games I made a life-changing decision to follow my Irish heritage and represent Ireland.
“I am very proud to wear green, white and orange on my back and I would love for people to follow my journey to Rio and beyond and help inspire the next Irish generation.”
His next big target is the FINA World Cup – and Olympic test event in Rio in February.
Funding his Olympic bid, though, is proving a tough task. With diving being low down the pecking order when it comes to handing out Olympic year funding, Dingley is in need of sponsorship and is calling upon potential fans to give to his cause, promising in return to do everything he can to bring back an Irish medal from Rio 2016.
He is seeking funding for this slice of history via crowd-funding platform PledgeSports.org
With backers offered the chance to get a diving lesson from Dingley.

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