NEWS

Canadians Benfeito, Filion take bronze in synchro diving

07/31/2012 12:15 EDT | Updated 09/30/2012 05:12 EDT
Divers Meaghan Benfeito and Roseline Filion kickstarted a run of three bronze medals for Canada on Tuesday at the London Olympics by finishing third in the women’s 10-metre synchronized event.

Just minutes after Filion and Benfeito clinched their medal, judoka Antoine Valois-Fortier won Canada's second bronze of the day by defeating American Travis Stevens in the third-place match in the men's 81-kg category.

Later, weightlifter Christine Girard gave Canada its third bronze of the day and fourth of the Olympic by placing third in the women's 63-kg division.

Benfeito, from Montreal, and Filion, from Laval, Que., finished behind gold medallists Chen Ruolin and Wang Hao of China, and Mexico’s Paola Espinosa Sanchez and Alejandra Orozco Loza, who claimed the silver.

Chen and Wang are the reigning world champions. Chen won gold in this event at the 2008 Beijing Olympics with former partner Wang Xin.

China has dominating the diving events in London, winning all three gold medals awarded so far.

Benfeito said she and Filion, who finished seventh in this event in 2008 in Beijing, were pleased with their result.

"We gave it all we had and we came away with a bronze medal," Benfeito said. "We're pretty happy with that."

Filion said the duo felt good about its chances after an "amazing" morning practice. They were calm and confident they could pull out a medal, if not necessarily a gold.

"We were ready," Filion said. "We talked to each other and said, 'There's nothing more we could have done, either here or at home. We're prepared. We did everything we could."'

The bronze was the first Olympic medal in the careers of both Benfeito and Filion, and the second for the Canadian diving team in London. Emilie Heymans and Jennifer Abel won Canada’s first medal of the Games on Sunday by placing third in the women’s three-metre synchro event.

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