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Sho SAKAI
Sport Diving
NOC Japan   
GenderMen
Born22 Aug 1992 in Sagamihara, JPN
Height1.71 m
 Human Interest 
Further Personal Information
Family
Three sons
Occupation
Athlete, Office Worker
Languages
Japanese
Higher education
Physical Education - Nippon Sport Science University: Setagaya, JPN
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
He first tried the sport in pre-school and was diving from a one-metre board at age two.
Why this sport?
He was influenced by his parents who were both divers. His mother taught him the basic skills and then his father became his first coach.
Club / Team
Miki House: Japan
Name of coach
Takamichi Nomura [national], JPN; Hiroyasu Sakai [personal, father], JPN
General Interest
Most influential person in career
His father Hiroyasu and his mother Yumiko. (sanspo.com, 28 Sep 2019; mainichi.jp, 02 May 2019)
Famous relatives
His father Hiroyasu and his mother Yumiko were divers at university level and have both worked as coaches. His sisters Yukina and Rina have also competed in diving. (sanspo.com, 28 Sep 2019; nhk.or.jp, 20 Jul 2014; city.sagamihara.kanagawa.jp, 10 Oct 2010; townnews.co.jp, 09 Jul 2009)
Ambitions
To win a medal at the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. (iza.ne.jp, 10 Dec 2021)
Other information
ILLNESS STRUGGLES
He has been troubled by the skin condition cholinergic urticaria since 2010. The condition causes hives and limits his training in the pool to one hour. He uses injections and acupuncture therapy as treatment and avoids medication due to concerns about doping violations. "It is like the stinging pain of a needle being stuck into your skin and, while low body temperature can keep the symptoms under control, it is impossible for me, as an athlete, to do that all the time. In the pool, I sweat after about an hour and it hurts, so I can't concentrate at all. I was even told by a doctor that my body was not suitable for a career as an athlete. That was shocking and it was hard for me to accept that an illness I had never heard of might cause me to stop competing. I hated every day but, after staying at home for two months, I was able to face up to things properly. I am always conscious of keeping my body temperature as low as possible. I also care about my blood sugar levels, and I try to avoid exposure to too much sunlight." (sponichi.co.jp, 03 May 2021; olympics.com, 27 Dec 2020; hochi.news, 04 Jul 2020; yahoo.co.jp, 15 Jun 2019)

OTHER ACTIVITIES
In 2018 he began a weekly radio show named 'Sakai Show Time', talking about his experiences as a diver. (sagamigekkouda.web.fc2.com, 01 Jun 2019)

FURTHER EDUCATION
He has studied for a postgraduate degree at Nippon Sport Science University in Setagaya, Japan. (olympics.com, 27 Dec 2020)

 Competition Highlights
Olympic Games
Rank Year Venue Event Result
5 2021 Tokyo, JPN 3m Springboard Synchro 393.93
Preliminary Round 2016 Rio de Janeiro, BRA 3m Springboard 373.70
World Championships
Rank Year Venue Event Result
6 2022 Budapest, HUN 3m Springboard 424.00
Preliminary Round 2019 Gwangju, KOR 3m Springboard 375.00
7 2019 Gwangju, KOR 3m Springboard Synchro 389.43 
Semifinal 2017 Budapest, HUN 3m Springboard 407.80
22 2015 Kazan, RUS 3m Springboard 411.10 
11 2015 Kazan, RUS 3m Springboard Synchro 389.94
8 2013 Barcelona, ESP 3m Springboard 433.40
9 2011 Shanghai, CHN 3m Springboard Synchro 395.19
Semifinal 2011 Shanghai, CHN 3m Springboard 430.85
Preliminary round 2011 Shanghai, CHN 10m Platform  DNS
Preliminary Round 2009 Rome, ITA 10m Platform 357.85
Grand Prix
Rank Year Venue Event Result
8 2018 Calgary, AB, CAN 3m Springboard 389.70
4 2018 Calgary, AB, CAN 3m Springboard Synchro 377.97
3 2017 Gatineau, QC, CAN 3m Springboard 453.45
7 2017 Gold Coast, QLD, AUS 3m Springboard 361.35
3 2017 Gold Coast, QLD, AUS 3m Springboard Synchro 383.01
2 2016 Bolzano, ITA 3m Springboard 445.80
5 2016 Gatineau, QC, CAN 3m Springboard 446.80
6 2015 Gatineau, QC, CAN 3m Springboard 428.60
5 2015 San Juan, PUR 3m Springboard 381.30
1 2015 San Juan, PUR 3m Springboard Synchro 378.27
21 2014   3m Springboard  
3 2014 Bolzano, ITA 3m Springboard 449.45
7 2013   3m Springboard  
7 2013 Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA 3m Springboard 423.30
9 2012   3m Springboard  
1 2012 Bolzano, ITA 3m Springboard 452.25
7 2011   3m Springboard  
4 2011 Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA 3m Springboard 439.35
3 2011 Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA 3m Springboard Synchro 390.66
3 2011 Montreal, QC, CAN 3m Springboard 485.25
3 2011 Montreal, QC, CAN 3m Springboard Synchro 365.04
6 2009   10m Platform  
40 2009   3m Springboard  
10 2009 Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA 3m Springboard 386.95
8 2009 Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA 10m Platform 417.10
2 2009 Montreal, CAN 10m Platform 469.65
15 2009 Montreal, CAN 3m Springboard 354.35
15 2008 Shenzhen, CHN 3m Springboard 359.20
Asian Championships
Rank Year Venue Event Result
2 2016 Tokyo, JPN 3m Springboard 444.70
Asian Games
Rank Year Venue Event Result
5 2018 Jakarta, INA 3m Springboard 430.80
3 2018 Jakarta, INA 3m Springboard Synchro 408.57
4 2014 Incheon, KOR 1m Springboard 371.70
3 2014 Incheon, KOR 3m Springboard 456.05
5 2010 Guangzhou, CHN 10m Platform 445.25
6 2010 Guangzhou, CHN 3m Springboard 410.25
4 2010 Guangzhou, CHN 3m Springboard Synchro 377.70
World Series
Rank Year Venue Event Result
13 2019   3m Springboard  
9 2019 Beijing, CHN 3m Springboard 398.65
7 2019 Sagamihara, JPN 3m Springboard 463.05
8 2019 Sagamihara, JPN 3m Springboard Synchro 322.23
13 2018   3m Springboard  
8 2018 Fuji, JPN 3m Springboard 429.30
3 2018 Fuji, JPN 3m Springboard Synchro 391.29
9 2014   3m Springboard  
10 2014 Beijing, CHN 3m Springboard 436.50
9 2014 Dubai, UAE 3m Springboard 426.95
8 2014 London, ENG 3m Springboard 438.95
10 2014 Monterrey, MEX 3m Springboard 422.25
12 2014 Moscow, RUS 3m Springboard 362.55
5 2014 Windsor, ON, CAN 3m Springboard 439.00