EJ Obiena finishes 4th in Diamond League final


EJ Obiena Paris Diamond League

FILE — The Philippines’ Ernest John Obiena competes in the men’s pole vault event during the IAAF Diamond League athletics meet in Paris on August 28, 2021. (Photo by Lucas BARIOULET / AFP)

MANILA, Philippines—Filipino pole vaulter EJ Obiena capped off his Diamond League season with a fourth place finish in the final in Zurich, Switzerland Friday (Manila time).

The 25-year-old cleared his best height of 5.83 meters but missed out on a medal after failing his three attempts at 5.93m.

His personal and national best is 5.91m, which he set last month in the Paris leg.

“Thank you for the love and support and [for] definitely staying up 2:30am,” said Obiena on Instagram.

Tokyo Olympics champion Armand Duplantis captured the gold, his sixth this year, vaulting over a height of 6.06m.

Sam Kendricks of the United States took the silver beating out Authorized Neutral Athletes’ Timur Margunov, who settled for bronze, via count back rule as both cleared 5.93m.

American Christopher Nilsen, who won silver in Tokyo, finished fifth in Zurich beating out compatriot KC Lightfoot, the fourth placer in the Olympics, via count back as they both had an event best of 5.83m.

Though Nilsen and Lightfoot both cleared the same height as Obiena, the Filipino needed just two attempts to go over 5.83m while the Americans needed three.

Obiena, who finished 11th in Tokyo, has had a surge of success post-Olympics, winning silver in Paris and barging into the fifth spot in the World Athletics rankings.

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