York & North Yorkshire

Jack Laugher family on his "well deserved" Olympic gold

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Media captionGB's Mears and Laugher take superb synchro gold

The family of Olympic diver Jack Laugher said his Rio gold medal was "thoroughly deserved" after years of hard work.

The 21-year-old - along with diving partner Chris Mears - won Britain's first Olympic diving title in the men's synchronised 3m springboard.

Jack's father David watched Wednesday's victory from the family's home at Ripon, North Yorkshire.

He said he was "banned" from Rio because he gets too nervous watching.

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Mr Laugher, whose wife is in Rio, admitted waiting for his son's event to start on Wednesday evening had been difficult.

He said: "The waiting got to me and I burst into tears. It was just the tension I think. Four years' wait and here we are.

"I was watching with our dog Alfie - I had my hands over my eyes.

"As Jack said, they have worked almost every day for the last four years to get to this position."

Jack told BBC Radio York it had been a "long road" to Rio.

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Image caption Jack Laugher and Chris Mears both train at the City of Leeds Diving Club

Mr Laugher said: "Jack started when he was seven.

"He moved out a couple of years ago to Leeds, so that took the pressure off us. But for the first ten years it was pick him up from school, drive him across, wait around for a couple of hours while he trained, then home at about half-past-eight for dinner, homework and bed.

"That was pretty much our life, but we have never regretted a single moment of it, certainly not with this outcome."

Jack currently trains with diving partner Chris at the City of Leeds Diving Club, but he began as a seven-year-old at the Harrogate and District Diving Club.

One of his former diving coaches in Harrogate, Sophie Howard, said: "I am just so pleased, not just for Jack but for his whole family.

"The sacrifices they have all made and that dedication - and it all comes together on a night like last night."

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