By Duncan Mackay
July 23 - British diving star Tom Daley (pictured), the current world champion in the 10 metre platform event, admits that he is looking forward to facing his strong Chinese rival Qui Bo when the two face off at the inaugural Summer Youth Olympic Games in Singapore next month.
In one of diving’s burgeoning rivalries, Daley said he is hoping to better the 2008 world junior champion in the 10m platform diving competition at the Toa Payoh Swimming Complex .
The 16-year-old said: "Qiu Bo came in second at the World Championships last year [where Daley claimed gold] and he beat me by half a point in the Junior World Championships in 2008.
"So we’ve kind of always got that little competition going between us."
In his bid to better his Chinese opponent, the 16-year-old, who was Britain’s youngest competitor at the Beijing 2008 Olympics, revealed that he is prepared to unveil three new dives from his repertoire.
Daley said: "Last year, I had one of the lowest degrees of difficulty.
"But now I have equally hard dives.
"I have spent eight months or so training quite hard, learning these new dives."
Despite doing dives of a lower difficulty level, Daley was the surprise winner of last year’s World Championships in Rome where Qiu Bo and his compatriot Zhou Luxin had finished second and third respectively.
Perfecting new dives of greater difficulty is all part of a plan for his ultimate aim of winning Olympic gold at London 2012.
He said: "It’s hard to get your head around it, as well as actually doing it.
"But at the moment, things are going quite well."
He also believes that staying in the Youth Olympic Village at the Nanyang Technological University is a crucial step in his preparations for London 2012.
He said: "I’m looking forward to being in the Village environment and taking in the experience of the Olympic Games."
"Any experience I can get at a multi-sports event is valuable.
"I’m really looking forward to the Youth Olympics because it’s the first one and it’s also going to be an amazing experience.
"It’s a multi-sports event and that’s something you don’t necessarily get in the European Junior Championships or the World Junior Championships."
He will not be short of competition exposure over the next few months as he is scheduled to take part in four back-to-back events.
The student from Plymouth College leaves for the European Championships in Budapest this Sunday (July 25).
After that, he arrives in Singapore for the Youth Olympics in August followed by September’s World Junior Championships in Tucson, Arizona, before his season ends with October’s Commonwealth Games in Delhi.
Daley said: "They are all as important, but the Youth Olympic Games is very, very high up there.
"I’m looking forward to that one and that’s when I’m going to try and do my best."
Daley, who will head a group of 40 young athletes from Britain, is widely expected to hold his nerve when he takes to the diving platform on the final day of the competition to clinch the gold.
And it is those steady nerves he will be relying on when he switches on his laptop on the same day to receive, by e-mail, the results of his GCSE’s.
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July 2010: Daley to lead Britain's team at Youth Olympics in Singapore
February 2010: Daley shocked by Waterfield in first competition as world champion
February 2010: Tom Daley reveals father's brain cancer is back
January 2010: Daley to use new dive at 2010 debut
November 2009: Exclusive - Daley has a "God given talent" but must not waste it says coach