James Heatkt makes his Commonwealth Games debut tomorrow in the 1m springboard event at the Royal Commonwealth Pool and he’s looking forward to stepping out in front of his home crowd.
The 16-year-old George Watson’s College pupil is one of the youngest members of Team Scotland – but he will have one of the oldest supporters in his 90-year-old grandfather, Sir Peter Heatly.
Grandad won five Commonwealth Games diving medals, including gold in 1950 in Auckland, 1954 in Vancouver and 1958 in Cardiff, and he is thrilled to be able to watch the youngster live in action.
“It’s going to be a great experience diving at my home pool,” said the Edinburgh Diving Club member. “It is going to be a very special few days.”
Heatly also takes part in the 3m sprinboard on Thursday and then 18-year-old Grace Reid will join the action on Friday and Saturday.
Reid, who has just left George Watson’s, is competing at her second Games and is a real medal prospect. “I learned a lot from Delhi four years ago,” said Reid, who lines-up in the 1m on Friday and the 3m on Saturday. “I’m not thinking about the podium. I just want to do my very best and see what it gives me.”
Reid and Heatly both train almost daily at the Royal Coomonwealth Pool and they hope that home advantage will benefit them in the only event at Glasgow 2014 being staged in Edinburgh. “I know the water and it should make a difference,” said Heatly. “We should also have the majority of the support, which is nice.”
Tom Daley is one of the main draws at the Commie Pool – a venue where he won gold in a World Cup event last year. The 20-year-old defends the 10m platform event he won in Delhi.