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EJ Obiena settles for share of 11th spot in men's pole vault event

EJ Obiena failed to sustain a solid start as he finished way outside of the podium.
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--EJ Obiena's bid to land a medal to cap probably a glorious day for Philippine sports came to a bitter end as he failed to make the Top 3 of the Tokyo Olympics men's pole vault final at the Tokyo Olympic Stadium on Tuesday night.

Obiena, ranked number six in the world, finished in joint 11th place after only clearing 5.7 meters, way below his personal best of 5.87 and even his season best of 5.8.

Obiena, who breezed through 5.55 meters in only one leap, needed three tries before getting 5.7.

There was some drama in his final attempt at 5.8 when he hesitated to make the jump after noticing that the upright bar was not established properly.

Time ran out on Obiena and was initially handed a foul, but after discussing to event officials the situation, he was given another jump.

In the end, however, Obiena missed his official third attempt and bowed out of the competition.

As highly anticipated, Mondo Duplantis of Sweden won the gold after beating Chris Nilsen of the United States.

Duplantis cleared 6.02 meters in just one try, while Nilsen missed out on the said height in all his three tries.

Duplantis, who never had a miss in his first four attempts, went all in and tried to break his own world record of 6.18 meters.

However, he fouled all his three tries at 6.19 meters, which in effect keeps the Olympic record at 6.03 as cleared by Brazil's Thiago Braz back in 2016 in Rio De Janeiro.

Braz, who has been Obiena's longtime training partner in Italy, settled for the bronze after only clearing 5.87 meters.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno

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