Obiena bags bronze

With Olympic and world champion Armand Duplantis participating, EJ Obiena settled for third place in the Athletissima Lausanne Diamond League at La Pontaise Olympic Stadium Friday in Switzerland.

Coming off a golden finish in Germany, Obiena registered 5.80 meters after two tries as he revs up for the all-important Diamond League final in Zurich early next month.

Duplantis put on another smashing showing by setting a meet record 6.10 meters while Chris Nilsen took the second spot also with 5.80 meters which he registered in just one attempt.

Sondre Guttormsen of Norway wound up fourth with 5.80 meters while Ben Broeders of Belgium emerged fifth with 5.70 meters.

Thiabut Collet of France placed sixth with 5.60 meters while Anthony Ammirati at seventh with 5.60 meters as well.

London Olympics gold medalist and France pole vaulter Renaud Lavillenie needed one attempt at 5.40 meters for eighth over his brother Valentin, who ended up at ninth despite posting a similar result.

Hometown bet Dominik Alberto needed three tries to get over 5.40 meters., leaving him last in the 10-man tourney.

Obiena, 26, who just recently got reinstated in the Philippine team, spent some time with kids at the Union Bank of Switzerland, before competing against the world’s finest pole vaulters.

“Athletissima never fails to amaze me. Yesterday (Thursday), I had the honor of teaching kids how to pole vault thru UBS Kids Cup and the day after, a fun competition along the port of Lausanne. Came out with a third-place finish and a 5.80 meters clearance,” said Obiena, who is in pursuit of a No. 2 spot in the World Athletics Rankings.

“Now we rest and head to the next one.”

Obiena next competes at the True Athletes Classics at the Stadion Manfort in Leverkusen, Germany on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. (Manila time).

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