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Rediff.com  » Sports » A cuddle from dad ruffles Daley

A cuddle from dad ruffles Daley

July 22, 2009 16:27 IST

Tom DaleyForget becoming Britain's first individual world diving champion, Tom Daley's toughest task on Tuesday was keeping his dad's ecstatic emotions in check.

The 15-year-old produced two stunning final three-and-a-half somersault dives to steal the gold off Chinese favourite Qiu Bo.

While Daley was calm and collected in the news conference afterwards, his father was so excited he posed as a member of the press and asked his son the all important question: "Tom, can I give you a cuddle?"

Daley reluctantly left his seat in front of the cameras and went to hug his father at the back of the room, before returning to the microphones and muttering: "How embarrassing!."

Seventh at last year's Beijing Games, Daley said he never expected to take the gold on a sweltering day at Rome's Foro Italico.

"Today was never the day I thought I would be world champion, to come away with the gold medal was just unthinkable this morning," he said.

"The next thing is hopefully to do the same thing at the London 2012 Olympics."

Officials said it was uncertain whether Daley is the youngest ever male diving champion. Age cheats could have slipped through the net in previous championships.

Daley competes again in Friday's synchronised 10m heats.

Photograph: Reuters

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