Favourites of diving - Germán Sánchez: Thank you, Mr Lifeguard!
Germán Sánchez is the great successor of former Mexican star divers Joaquín Capilla and Álvaro Gaxiola. The 24-year-old Pan-American champion, Olympic and world silver medallist athlete was born in Guadalajara, the city previously winning the bid for the 2017 FINA World Championships. However, as life brings it will be Budapest where Sánchez could demonstrate again that he is a world class diver.
An average sports fan definitely knows that Chinese, American, British, Canadian and Italian divers are among the best in the world, but what about Mexico? Diving has great traditions in the Latin American country as well.
Joaquín Capilla for example was one of the best athletes in the history of diving. He stood on the podium at three different Olympics, he won gold at the 1956 Games in Melbourne. Álvaro Gaxiola was a silver medallist at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, and the present’s world class Mexican is Germán Sánchez!
Sánchez has an extraordinary story in relation to diving. His father used to take him to the pool and made him jump in. A lifeguard noticed and told him he could be good at diving. The lifeguard was right, and Germán Sánchez Sr. who was a professional soccer player in Tecos, Chivas and Atlante, had to give up the dream of his son being his successor in the most popular team sport, but he would be a very good diver!
Sánchez took part in the 2008 Olympics at age 16, where he gained a lot of experience. In 2009 he and his partner Iván García competed at their first FINA World Championships in Rome, and they finished 8th in the 10m synchro event.
In 2010 he won his first medals at major international events such as the Youth Olympic Games. He and García won gold in his hometown Guadalajara at the 2011 Pan-American Games, and they finished second both at the 2012 Olympics and the FINA Diving World Series. Sánchez won two bronze medals at the 2013 Summer Universiade in Kazan.
Kazan may be his favourite city, since he and García won another silver at the 2015 FINA World Championships. Sánchez proved, however, that he is one of the best divers in the individual 10m springboard event as well, finishing second behind Chinese Chen Aisen.
Sánchez suffers from hypermobility in his right shoulder, which makes the joint more susceptible to dislocation. ‘It's something I must live with and take care of, not only in my shoulders but my whole body.’ – he once told Informador.mx.
Germán Sánchez will likely be seen on 17 July (final of the 10m synchro) and on 22 July (final of the 10 m springboard) at the 2017 FINA World Championships in Budapest.
Born: Guadalajara (Mexico), 24 June, 1992
Two-time Olympic silver medallist (2012 London, 10m synchro; 2016 Rio de Janeiro, 10m springboard)
World silver medallist (2015 Kazan, 10 m synchro)
FINA Diving World Series: silver medallist (2012, 10 m synchro)
Pan-American Games champion (2011 Guadalajara, 10 m synchro)
Two-time Central American and Caribbean Games champion (2010 Mayagüez; 10 m springboard and 10 m synchro)
Two-time Universiade bronze medallist (2013 Kazan, 10 m synchro and team)