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Inner Western Courier Thursday Not Used Anymore : July 30 2008
INNER-WEST WEEKLY, Thursday, July 31, 2008 A-3 GAMES ON: BEIJING BOUND www.innerwestweekly.com.au Diving coach hopes duo makes a splash Chava Sobrino with his NSW Institute of Sport divers Matthew Mitcham and Alex Croak. Picture: HANSON SPORTS MEDIA CHAVA Sobrino, the head coach of diving in NSW for more than a decade, is off to his sixth Olympics. He represented his native Mexico in diving at the Moscow Olympics in 1980. His other five have been as a coach, with the Mexican team in Seoul (1988) and Barcelona (1992), and with Aust- ralia in Atlanta (1996), Sydney (2000) and now Beijing. Games divers Alexandra Croak and Matthew Mitcham are part of Sobrino's NSW Institute of Sport squad at the Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre. After first being based in Brisbane with the Australian In- stitute of Sport squad, Sobrino won the top diving job with the newly-established NSWIS in 1997. When he started the new program, he didn't expect success to come so quickly. ''I just got introduced to a bunch of kids,'' Sobrino said. ''Among those kids was Rebecca Gilmore, who, with Loudy Tourky, brought the first (diving) medal for Australia in 76 years.'' That was in the synchronised 10m platform event in Sydney. Tourky had followed Sobrino from the AIS squad. She returned to Brisbane before the Athens Olympics in 2004. Then came the retirement of Gilmore, Athens Olympian Steven Barnett and others, and Sobrino's talent pool was drying up. ''You start from scratch again,'' Sobrino said. In 2004 Croak, a former Olympic gymnast, took up diving with Sobrino's Perfect 10 club. Such was her progress that within a year, NSWIS had set up a talent transfer scholarship for her and other former gymnasts. Mitcham, from Brisbane, had retired while still a junior diver. He moved to Sydney and ap- proached Sobrino to make a come- back in April last year. Countdown to gold starts on Saturday Kenrick Monk qualifies for Beijing. PRANESH NAGESHWAR SYDNEY Olympic Park Aquatic Centre swimmer Kenrick Monk is expected to be one of the strong chances to score a medal in the pool at the Beijing Olympics. He will be swimming to win gold in the 200m freestyle. Monk qualified for his debut Olympic team with a personal best time of 1:47.10 in the men's 200m freestyle in the Olympic trials held in Sydney in March. He said his training had started tapering off since early last week. On Friday he swam 4.5km at Homebush and then had the afternoon off. ''I'm off to do a bit of shopping -- pencils and shaving gear,'' Monk said, before leaving for Beijing on Saturday. ''I had dinner with a couple of friends last night,'' he said. Monk said it was good to relax as the excitement of the Olympics was building up. ''I'm confident of doing well after all the training we have done,'' he said. Monk's mum Margaret and dad John will be in Beijing to see their son compete in the Olympics. Monk said he watched the Sydney 2000 Olympics and it inspired him. ''I thought, 'I want to go and do that one day','' he said. Fellow SOPAC swimmer Grant Brits will celebrate his 21st birthday at the Beijing Olympics, where he aims to win a medal in the 4x200m freestyle event. Cuffe links go back 16 years Nikita Cuffe in action. FIVE Dock's Nikita Cuffe is off to the Beijing Olympics Games to compete in water polo. Cuffe started playing as a 13-year-old and has reached the pinacle of her sport at the age of 29 by training several times a week. She and her team placed fourth at the Athens Olympics. Cuffe first competed in water polo at her Brisbane high school. She moved to Sydney, where she is now a member of the Sydney University Lions and works as an administration assistant with the NSW Institute of Sport. Cuffe went on to play at an international level, scoring an out- standing list of placings. Her first major international achievement was in the FINA World Junior Championships in Messina in 1999, where her team won. She usually plays CF/CB. Cuffe thanks her current national team coach Greg McFadden for his motivation. Restore smooth contours and reduce cellulite with light-energy & vacuum massage. Clinically proven. No injections required. tummy -- midrift -- buttocks-- thighs --arms purchase a package of ELOS velasmooth and receive FREE CELLULITE HOME TREATMENT PACK valued at $300* 9747 5444 2354969i iww wk5
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