By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
Filipino pole vaulting stalwart EJ Obiena continued his tremendous performance in his series of international outings after another podium finish during the Mondo Classic held in Uppsala, Sweden last February 3, 2023.
Obiena managed to secure the bronze medal after an impressive routine behind pole vaulting greats Armand Duplantis of Sweden and United States’ KC Lightfoot.
The young superstar not only extended his streak of podium finishes but also topped his season-best tally after successfully leaping over the 5.91-meter height.
Obiena earlier opened his 2023 with a bang after a silver medal finish in Germany and a gold medal in France several days ago.
Obiena acquired his first season-high score during his campaign in France, scoring 5.82 meters against 12 other competitors from all over the world.
It didn’t take him too much time to reset his best scoring performance of the year so far when he immediately got his rhythm in Sweden.
Obiena had the chance to surpass the 5.91-meter height but two-straight fouls forced him to make a crucial decision whether to stay at the said height or gamble at the 6.05 meters.
He then decided to save the best for last and try his luck at the 6.05 meters but failed in his quest to break his Asian and PHL records when he hit the bar in his routine.
Duplantis dominated the event with a scintillating score of 6.10 meters in front of his hometown fans while Lightfoot garnered 5.91 meters.
Sweden’s finest pole vaulter didn’t settle when he completed the 6.10-meter height and opted to do more when he attempted to leap over the 6.20 and the 6.22-meter heights.
However, the world no.1 pole vaulter and the Tokyo Olympic gold medalist burnt all of his three attempts and failed to break his own world records.