Two hits in Poland for Obiena

Joey Villar - The Philippine Star
Two hits in Poland for Obiena
EJ Obiena
STAR / File

MANILA, Philippines — Filipino star pole-vaulter EJ Obiena is striking while the iron is hot.

Re-energized by a new set of poles he received from the Philippines, Obiena continued to compete like a man-possessed and topped the Czeslaw Cybulski Memorial in Poznan, Poland over the weekend.

The World No. 2 and Asian champion from Tondo in Manila was a cut above the rest in Poznan as he cleared 5.87 meters that erased last year’s meet record of 5.80m and the five-year-old stadium mark of 5.80m both set by local hero Piotr Lisek.

Lisek tried to defend home soil but ended up at second with 5.82m while Saudi Arabia’s Hussain Al-Hizam (5.62) took the bronze over China’s Huang Bokai via countback.

Obiena scored a twin-kill in Poland as he also reigned supreme over in Bydgoszcz with a personal season-high of 5.97m a few days ago.

“Back to back competitions in Poland were definitely a blast. Thank you Poznan for the great time,” said Obiena on his social media page.

While Obiena has yet to breach the 6m mark – his personal best – this year, the Southeast Asian Games king is on a high going to Paris in chase of his Olympic dream.

Meanwhile, work began in earnest at the Team Philippines training camp in Metz on Sunday with Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) president Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino and Chef de Mission Jonvic Remulla leading the rounds at the all-in facility where the Olympics-bound Filipino athletes will get in harness for a month.

“It’s all systems go here at La Moselle,” said Tolentino, adding “the morale of the team is very high.”

This marks the first time that the POC is conducting a training camp for Olympic athletes a month before competition.

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