ENGLISH-BORN Olympic diver Oliver Dingley has expressed his pride at being able to represent Ireland in Rio as he prepares for his journey home.
The 23-year-old this week became Ireland’s first representative in diving at the Olympics since Eddie Heron 68 years ago, and he fared well having reached the men’s 3metre springboard final.
He was beaten in the last round as China, Great Britain and Germany took gold, silver and bronze respectively, but remained competitive throughout having posted a personal best of 442.90, which put him eighth.
After leaving Team GB two years ago in order to compete for Ireland, Dingley has no regrets about his decision, telling his new Irish fans “I’m all yours”.
— NAC (@nacdublin) August 17, 2016
“It’s just so surreal – the Olympic final, and I got an Irish record in the final, for that’s a great achievement," he told RTÉ Sport.
"It was a proud moment for both of us. I’m all yours. I’m so proud to be able to represent Ireland. I’m so lucky.
"I’m the one who gets to stand on that diving board but there’s a whole team effort behind me being able to get there. I’m so proud and humbled.
“I didn’t know what to expect when I came out. I’ll be home in Ireland before the Games finish so I’ll be able to watch the rest of the Olympics with the Irish people.
"It was so fun out there; I was so nervous but I had the time of my life. I just went out to enjoy myself and it was amazing."