Athletics

EJ Obiena sets Philippine pole vault record in Germany tilt

Beatrice Go
EJ Obiena sets Philippine pole vault record in Germany tilt

Photo from EJ Obiena's Facebook

EJ Obiena eclipses his own national record in another golden performance ahead of the Tokyo Olympics

EJ Obiena has been on a roll as he bagged his second gold in three tournaments and surpassed the Philippine national outdoor pole vault record on Friday, June 11 (Saturday, June 12, Manila time) in the Jump and Fly competition in Mossingen, Germany.

The Tokyo 2020-bound pole vaulter reset his own national record with a height of 5.85 meters for the gold.

This eclipsed the 5.81 meter-mark he set last September 2019 in Chiari, Italy which secured him a Tokyo 2020 Olympics berth.

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[PODCAST] Targeting Tokyo: EJ Obiena

[PODCAST] Targeting Tokyo: EJ Obiena

Obiena kicked off the outdoor season this June with a golden performance in Sweden where he matched the Tokyo 2020 qualifying standard of 5.80m.

Clearing the same height in the 2021 FBK Games in the Netherlands, he copped a silver medal a few days later behind world record holder Armand Duplantis, who nailed a 6.10m mark.

The 25-year-old pole vaulter is riding on a hot momentum as he broke the Philippine national indoor record thrice at the start of the year.

Obiena became the first Filipino to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and continues to be a prime bet for a medal in the global sports showpiece to be staged from July 23 to August 8.

In 2019, he reset the Philippine outdoor record thrice and copped the elusive Southeast Asian (SEA) Games gold.

Obiena also won the country’s first medal in the 2020 Monaco Diamond League with a bronze finish last August.

He continues to train with Olympic champion coach Vitaly Petrov in Formia, Italy as he ramps up his bid for the Tokyo Games. – Rappler.com

To discover the stories of our Filipino Olympic hopefuls, subscribe to Rappler Sports podcast Targeting Tokyo on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.