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Chen tops platform qualifier; Viola out

London, England (Sports Network) - Reigning Olympic champion Chen Ruolin was the top qualifier Thursday morning in the women's 10-meter platform event.

Two Canadian divers also made the evening final, while Brittany Viola and her United States teammate Katie Bell were both eliminated.

Chen, who is looking to sweep the platform events for the second Olympics in a row, totaled 407.25 points on her five semifinal dives. She was also the top diver in Wednesday's preliminaries.

Canadian Meaghan Benfeito was second, 47.35 points behind Chen, and Australian Brittany Broben was third. Canadian Roseline Filion qualified eighth out of the 12 divers who made the final.

Viola, the daughter of 1988 American League Cy Young Award winner Frank Viola, finished 15th -- more than 15 points out of a qualifying spot. Bell was 16th.

Chen, who already won synchronized platform gold with Wang Hao, entered the Olympics as the overwhelming favorite and is looking to extend China's diving dominance.

The country has won gold in five of the six diving events in London after going 7-for-8 in Beijing four years ago.

Russia's Ilya Zakharov was the first non-Chinese diver to win gold here when he beat Qin Kai and He Chong to win the men's 3-meter springboard on Tuesday, saying afterward he was pleased "that I managed to take a medal away from China."

08/09 07:47:50 ET


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