NEWS
04/24/2016 16:54 EDT | Updated 04/25/2017 01:12 EDT

Canada's Olympic diving team close to complete

Canada's top divers may have struggled at the final World Series event of the season, but Diving Canada is now closer to knowing who will be wearing the maple leaf at the Rio Olympics.

This weekend's event in Kazan, Russia saw Canada win silver in the women's 10-metre synchro and a bronze in mixed 3m synchro. Two medals is a significant decrease from hauls at their two previous events; Canada was on the podium 16 times between last weekend's World Series and the Canada Cup the weekend before that. 

"[Kazan] certainly wasn't [our best performance]" said Mitch Geller, the chief technical officer in charge of high performance and athlete development for Diving Plongeon Canada.

Even though Canada's divers didn't fulfill their potential in one of their last international competitions before the Summer Games, Geller isn't concerned.

"One of the things we looked to work through in the meet was really focusing on establishing priorities in technique and not as concerned with ultimate placing," he told CBC Sports.

Wear and tear

The team had to be dealing with exhaustion in Kazan; the event was their fourth competition this month. Despite some podium-regulars not winning medals, Canada's athletes still managed to stir up Olympic excitement with their performances. 

"[It's not like we're] walking away and saying the field is ahead of us in anyway; we just made some gaffes," Geller said. 

"Look what we're seeing from Jennifer Abel... she's nipping at the heels of the top Chinese divers," he said. "But she gave away a dive [this weekend] and that's what happens.

"A split-second thing and it can have a devastating effect on the results."

Montreal-born Philippe Gagné also impressed with a sixth place finish in men's 3m springboard. At just 18, that virtually puts him amongst the top six in the world.

"That's far beyond what we expected to see from [Philippe] at this point in his career." said Geller.

Still cutting down for Rio

However, there were some lacklustre Canadian performances that may have Olympic-sized repercussions. 

"The significance of today's 10m platform event for our men was Maxime Bouchard did not score high enough to challenge Vincent Riendeau for the single spot that has been confirmed," said Geller, who was clear to point out this is all unofficial.

FINA will confirm whether Canada will get another spot in the event come June once all countries have confirmed their final entries

"We're optimistic we will get a second spot – if not, it looks like Vincent would be our nomination."

Also, Canada will have to host an Olympic trial for the men's 3m springboard. Neither Francois Imbeau-Dulac or Gagné's individual performances this weekend secured their spot in the event.

Imbeau-Dulac will be competing for his second Olympic appearance in the 3m (he missed a spot in the final by one place in London 2012) while Gagné is looking to qualify for the first time.

Canada's Fab Four have unofficially secured their positions in Rio alongside the synchro teams. 

Once Diving Plongeon Canada returns from Russia they will meet to confirm the details. The team will be officially announced at the Olympic trials on June 11-12.