Skip to main content

Alexandre Despatie looks towards the crowd after competing in the 3 meter open final event at the Canada Cup diving competition in Montreal on May 6 , 2012.


The photo evidence doesn't give much away, it's just a young man in sunglasses and a bandage that covers his head and ears.

But the image of Canadian diver Alexandre Despatie, posted on the Facebook page of his Spanish training partner, is revealing in at least one respect: he's smiling broadly.

"His voice sounded much better when I spoke to him [Thursday] morning," Despatie's mother, Christiane, said.

Story continues below advertisement

The 27-year-old double Olympic silver medalist was showing no ill effects from hitting his head on a springboard in Madrid on Tuesday – other than the 10-centimetre scar along his hairline.

Christiane Despatie said he isn't suffering from any concussion symptoms, but doctors decided to keep him under observation until Friday. He'll likely return to Montreal on the weekend.

"His spirits are good, his biggest concern is being able to get back into the pool in two weeks," she said, joking her son was sporting an "Invisible Man" look in the Facebook photo, which he texted to his family.

Despatie required both internal and external stitches – he wouldn't tell his mother how many – in a 40-minute operation that followed his mishap, which occurred in practice for this weekend's meet in the Spanish capital. He was performing an inward 3.5-somersault on the three-metre springboard.

It's not expected the injury will prevent Despatie from attending the 2012 London Olympics., where he is a threat to win a third medal.

Christiane Despatie said the former world champion was touched by the outpouring of support from fans across the country. "It's been absolutely incredible, and quite touching," she said.

Report an error Licensing Options
About the Author
National Correspondent

Sean Gordon joined the Globe's Quebec bureau in 2008 and covers the Canadiens, Alouettes and Impact, as well as Quebec's contingent of Olympic athletes. More


The Globe invites you to share your views. Please stay on topic and be respectful to everyone. For more information on our commenting policies and how our community-based moderation works, please read our Community Guidelines and our Terms and Conditions.

We’ve made some technical updates to our commenting software. If you are experiencing any issues posting comments, simply log out and log back in.

Discussion loading… ✨