Natalie Uy
Joey Mendoza
Natalie Uy cops pole vault bronze in Asian athletics tiff
Joey Villar ( - April 24, 2019 - 2:56pm

MANILA, Philippines – Fil-Am Natalie Uy claimed a pole vault bronze medal in the 23rd Asian Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar Tuesday while breaking the Philippine record she set just more than a month ago in Ilagan City, Isabela.

Uy, a 24-year-old former Eastern Michigan standout who went through the tedious process of securing documents to compete for the national team, registered 4.20 meters to take the bronze behind China’s Ling Li, an Olympian and Asian Games champion, and Xu Huiqin, who had 4.61m and 4.31m to cop the gold and silver, respectively.

The feat also eclipsed her own national mark of 4.12m she set in the Ayala Phl Athletics Championship in Ilagan City a month back when she made her much-awaited debut.

That impressive effort erased the 38-year-old record set by Deborah Samson in the Invitational Championships in Cerritos in the US.

Uy actually attempted a 4.20m in Ilagan but failed to make a good clearance, not thanks to fatigue and the hot Isabela weather.

On this particular one, she made sure she would clear it.

The performance also bodes well for Uy’s bid to strike gold in the Southeast Asian Games the country will host late this year as she had flattened the 4.10m mark set by Thai Chomchuendee on the latter’s way to the 2017 SEAG gold.

And Uy hasn’t peaked yet as her personal best is 4.30m she set in Castellon, Spain a year ago when she has yet to represent the Philippines that time.

Hopefully, Uy will try to surpass it in time for the SEAG.

Uy’s recent success came a few days after homegrown EJ Obiena snatched the men’s pole vault gold and in the process ripped a 26-year-old in the biennial meet.

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