EJ Obiena makes historic podium finish with bronze at the World Athletics Championships

MANILA, Philippines – Ernest John “EJ” Obiena has marked a historic win as he bagged a bronze medal at the World Athletics Championships on Monday, July 25 (Manila time).

EJ Obiena clinched bronze at the World Athletics Championships
EJ Obiena clinched bronze at the World Athletics Championships | Photo Courtesy: Facebook/ EJ Obiena

The Filipino pole vaulter bagged the third winning spot at the men’s pole vault final of the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon. He broke his own record, as well as national and Asian records, as he clinched a record of 5.94 meters in the finals. He previously held the Asian record at 5.93 meters, which he achieved at the International Golden Roof Challenge last September 2021.

Obiena was able to easily clear the 5.55 meter, but it took him 2 more jumps to finish 5.70m. He went on to clear 5.80m and 5.87m, which put him alongside Thiago Braz of Brazil in the first spot. However, he committed a fault on his first attempt at 5.94m, pulling him down to the 4th spot. He finally clinched the third spot after finishing in 5.94 after 2 attempts.

His historic win becomes more memorable as he is the first Filipino to clinch a medal at the World Athletic Championships. Obiena said that while he worked hard for his victory, he didn’t expect the results would lead to a medal.

“This was something I really wanted but I do not know if I was expecting it. I definitely did not expect that I would jump that high. And I would not think that it would actually take that high to win a medal,” he said.

Swedish pole vaulter Mondo Duplantis earned the gold with a record of 6.0m while Christopher Nilsen of the US bagged the silver medal.

Obiena has been on an impressive streak, winning 6 gold medals this year. His latest gold was at the Jump and Fly meet in Germany early this July.

On Obiena’s official Facebook page, his team is hopeful that there’s still more in store for the Pinoy athlete. They posted, “2022 World Athletics Championships. The Philippines is the best in Asia for pole vault. And 3rd best in the world. EJ is hungry for more cookie. The best is yet to come.”

— Sally, The Summit Express

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