Pole vaulter Ernest John Obiena sets SEA Games record
Asia’s top pole vaulter Ernest John Obiena set his eyes on the World Athletics Championships in July after retaining his SEA Games title by easily clearing a game-record of 5.46m on Saturday.
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The 26-year-old Filipino, who is ranked the sixth best male pole vaulter in the world, surpassed his previous Southeast Asian Games record of 5.45m set in 2019 to win gold.
But in foggy conditions at the Mai Din National Stadium in Vietnam’s capital Hanoi, Obiena missed out on bettering his Asian-record 5.93m.
“I wanted to beat the Asian record. You never know how many chances I get, I wanted to, I really wanted it today,” he told reporters later, failing three times at 5.94m.
But he still felt “positive” about the world championships in Oregon in two months’ time.
“The first fight is that I need to make sure I get there. (First) I get selected to compete and the next is to do well,” said Obina, who competed at last summer’s Tokyo Olympics. United was in 11th place.
“That’s why here I am. I’m ready.”
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