Wu Minxia

Wu Minxia
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Chinese diving legend emotionally retires

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Wu Minxia, one of two divers to win five Olympic gold medals, announced her retirement Thursday, reportedly saying her physical condition would not allow her to compete.

Wu, 31, made the emotional announcement on Chinese TV (video here).

“I am really sorry, but my physical condition does not allow me to continue training,” Wu said on TV, according to Agence France-Presse and Reuters. “I really feared the coming of today.”

Wu hinted at retirement in a Weibo post Wednesday.

“Now, though reluctantly, it’s time to leave,” was posted, according to Reuters. “The story of Chinese diving didn’t start with me, and it won’t end with me.”

Wu contemplated retirement after the 2012 London Olympics and has had many injuries during her decorated career, most recently a reported leg injury in May. So many that she was nicknamed “The Fragile Girl.”

Wu is the only diver to win gold medals at four Olympics and, with countrywoman Chen Ruolin, one of the only two with five gold medals total.

Chen announced her retirement at age 23 in October due to injuries.

Wu made her Olympic debut at Athens 2004 at age 18, winning the first of her four straight Olympic synchronized springboard titles. The first two were with Guo Jingjing. The last two were with He Zi and Shi Tingmao.

Wu also owns a full set of individual springboard medals (silver in 2004, bronze in 2008 and gold in 2012).

Only one diver owns more Olympic medals — Russian Dmitry Sautin — who won eight from 1992 through 2008.

MORE: Barrier-breaking U.S. diver dies at age 96

China’s Minxia wins record fifth straight Olympic diving gold medal

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China’s Wu Minxia and Shi Tingmao were expected to win gold in the women’s synchronized 3m springboard diving competition, with the tandem being the dominant force in that discipline. Minxia and Shi made good on that expectation Sunday afternoon, winning gold in Rio de Janeiro with the victory representing a historic achievement for Minxia.

WATCH: China’s fifth dive clinches gold in synchronized springboard

Minxia has now won five consecutive Olympic gold medals in this event, which is a record. And with six total medals in Olympic diving competitions, Minxia now has more than any other woman in the history of the Olympics. Those were just two of the accomplishments for Minxia, with she and Tingmao winning the competition by nearly 32 points with Italy’s Tania Cagnotto and Francesca Dellape’ finishing second.

Winning the bronze were Australia’s Maddison Keeney and Anabelle Smith, who were last in the field after two rotations.

China diving stars won’t defend individual Olympic titles in Rio, report says

Chen Ruolin
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Neither of China’s individual diving gold medalists will defend their titles in Rio, according to Xinhua News Agency.

The Chinese Olympic diving team hasn’t been officially named, but trials are over and those results have determined the team, according to the report.

Reigning Olympic platform champion Chen Ruolin and springboard champion Wu Minxia will go to Rio, but only in synchronized events, according to the report.

Chen and Wu also competed only in separate synchro events at the 2015 World Championships, where China swept the four synchro titles, as it did at the last two Olympics.

Rio could mark the first time since 1988 that zero Chinese divers attempt to repeat as individual Olympic champions. In between, legends Gao MinFu MingxiaXiong Ni and Guo Jingjing won back-to-back golds. As did Chen on the platform in 2008 and 2012.

Chen and Wu are tied with Guo and Fu and Americans Greg Louganis and Pat McCormick for the record of four Olympic diving titles.

The Chinese Olympic men’s diving team is expected to be led by platform star Qiu Bo. Qiu was upset for London Olympic gold by American David Boudia but relegated Boudia to silver at the last three World Championships.

MORE: David Boudia: ‘Silver is like a thorn in the side’