Men's synchronised diving platform pairing Oleksandr Bondar and Viktor Minibayev were the only diving medallists for the Russian Olympic Committee in Tokyo ©Getty Images

Russian Diving Federation President Stanislav Druzhinin has revealed he is set to meet sports officials in China next month to discuss competitions with Chinese divers.

"We are negotiating with the Asian side, in particular with China, we will look for an opportunity to participate in their competitions," Druzhinin told Russia's official state news agency TASS.

"We have been doing this work since last year, but due to COVID restrictions, we could not even go to China for negotiations, now there is such an opportunity, so we continue to build relationships with the Chinese side and Asia as a whole."

Any agreement would enable Russian divers to compete against the leading nation in the sport.

At the Tokyo Olympics, China won seven of the eight available gold medals in diving.

"I personally plan to go to China in May, I will talk about the participation of their athletes in our competitions and our athletes in their competitions," said Druzhinin.

Druzhinin's trip follows the visit of Chinese leader Xi Jinping to the Kremlin last month when Xi signalled his support for the Games of the Future, an event planned for 2024 in Russia, and other sporting exchanges between the two nations.

 At the Tokyo Olympics, Oleksandr Bondar and Viktor Minibayev were the only Russian Olympic Committee medallists in diving when they took bronze in the men’s synchronised platform.

Double gold medallist Shi Tingmao was emblematic of China's dominance in diving at Tokyo 2020 ©Getty Images
Double gold medallist Shi Tingmao was emblematic of China's dominance in diving at Tokyo 2020 ©Getty Images

Druzhinin confirmed that negotiations were also continuing to allow Russian divers to participate in the Asian Games in Hangzhou this September and October.

The Russian wrestling and gymnastics federations have both revealed that they received invitations to compete.

Druzhinin remains confident of sending divers to the 2024 Olympics in Paris, even though Russia is set to miss the World Championships in 2023.

Last week, the World Aquatics (WA) Bureau established a task force to "explore a potential pathway for athletes with a Russian or Belarusian passport to participate in future international aquatics events as individual neutral athletes."

The group is set to report back in July, too late for Russian and Belarusian divers to compete in the WA World Championships in Fukuoka, Japan, which are scheduled to open on July 14.

"This news did not surprise us, we understood that we were unlikely to get to Japan, because even if we were admitted, we would have faced the problem of obtaining visas," Druzhinin admitted.

Russian athletes are also set to miss the European Games diving events, scheduled for Oswiecim, Poland from June 21 to 25.

"We still have the opportunity to qualify for the Olympics next year if we get to the World Championships in Qatar, which will be held in February," Druzhinin added.

"We very much hope that we will perform at this event."

The WA World Championships in Doha are scheduled for February 2 to 14.