Tom Daley has been told to lay off his favourite foods as he attempts to get back to the top of world diving in time for this summer’s Commonwealth Games.
Daley’s new coach Jane Figueiredo has warned the 19-year-old to ignore his sweet tooth ahead of the Games in Glasgow. It is a directive that Daley has heeded after previously admitting that his love of ice cream and sweets could have cost him his bronze medal at the London Olympics.
Daley was warned he was too fat prior to London 2012 by British Swimming team director Alexei Evangulov. Daley responded by losing over a stone and then claiming his emotional podium place at the London Aquatics Centre.
“That’s an element of Tom’s training that I felt like we could get better and he’s really, really jumped on that bandwagon,” said Figueiredo. “It’s shown. He’s moving better and we’re making our dives easier. That was one of those elements that I felt we needed to improve on.”
Figueiredo only took over as Daley’s coach in January but has already been credited with helping to reinvigorate his love for diving.
Daley openly admitted to suffering a post-Olympic let-down after the emotional lead-up to his medal success. The teenager has also benefited from moving to London earlier this year. He left his family and friends in his home town of Plymouth, as well as long-time coach Andy Banks, to begin his new life in the capital.
While Figueiredo acknowledges she has been handed a ready-made star – Daley won the platform world title as a 15-year-old under Banks – she is determined to push him back to the top.
“I think he’s always had a lot of fun so, although I am fun, probably some technical work will be a focus,” said Figeiredo, who left her life in the United States to become Daley’s mentor. “He already came pretty much a package deal. My goal is for him to rise to that next level and find what that is. We’re always trying to win. We’re always trying to be a winner.”
In his first event since changing coaches, at the World Series opener in Beijing a month ago, Daley won bronze in the 10-metre platform.