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EJ Obiena delivers PH’s first Asian Video games gold in Hangzhou with report win

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Asian Games - Hangzhou 2022 - Athletics - Olympic Sports Centre Stadium, Hangzhou, China - September 30, 2023 Philippines' Ernest John Obiena celebrates with the Philippines flag after winning the Men's Pole Vault Final

Asian Video games – Hangzhou 2022 – Athletics – Olympic Sports activities Centre Stadium, Hangzhou, China – September 30, 2023 Philippines’ Ernest John Obiena celebrates with the Philippines flag after successful the Males’s Pole Vault Ultimate REUTERS/Jeremy Lee

HANGZHOU, China—EJ Obiena lived as much as expectations and delivered the primary gold medal of the Philippines within the nineteenth Asian Video games on Saturday night.

With hardly any menace to the two-time Asian champion, Obiena validated his declare to the continental throne and added the Asiad diadem to his myriad of medal collections.

Obiena cleared 5.75 meters for the gold and in a while established a brand new Asian Video games Video games report by hurdling 5.90m when all of his rivals already fell by the wayside.

“I believe it was like icing on the cake to me. That is the largest job, our nation wanted it and it’s my job to carry it,” Obiena mentioned.

Obiena, the world’s second greatest within the self-discipline behind world champion Armand “Mondo’” Duplantis of Sweden, sought to interrupt his personal Asian report of six meters by elevating the bar to six.02, however proved unsuccessful in three makes an attempt.

The Filipino pole vault movie star worn out the 5.75m Asian Video games report of Japan’s Seito Yamamato, who achieved the golden feat within the 2018 version in Indonesia.

Obiena’s gold medal ended greater than every week of ready for a victory-starved delegation within the continental model of the Olympics.

“It feels good. Lots of people had been in all probability anticipating it, placing stress on my shoulders, Lastly, I suppose you guys put it on the market prefer it was certain gold. We pushed by way of and we had been in a position to do what we wanted to do,” Obiena. mentioned.

Previous to the golden breakthrough, Staff Philippines solely picked up a silver in wushu courtesy of sanda fighter Arnel Mandal and 6 bronzes, together with two from tennis surprise Alex Eala within the girls’s singles and combined doubles with Francis Casey Alcantara.

China’s Huang Bokai obtained the silver through countback (5.65) and Saudi Arabia’s Hussain Al Hizam took the bronze after hurdling the identical peak.

Obiena is the primary and solely Filipino to date to qualify for subsequent 12 months’s Paris Olympics.

Asian Games - Hangzhou 2022 - Athletics - Olympic Sports Centre Stadium, Hangzhou, China - September 30, 2023 Philippines' EJ Obiena in action during the Men's Pole Vault final

Asian Video games – Hangzhou 2022 – Athletics – Olympic Sports activities Centre Stadium, Hangzhou, China – September 30, 2023 Philippines’ EJ Obiena in motion throughout the Males’s Pole Vault last REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

The Italy-based 27-year-old missed out on a medal within the earlier Asiad 5 years in the past and ended up seventh after shortly recovering from an ACL damage on the time.

However all the things has gone north for Obiena since then.

He bagged a bronze medal within the 2022 World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon and confirmed nice strides after a silver efficiency at precisely the identical world meet final month in Budapest, Hungary.

After rewriting historical past with these pair of medals on the planet championships, Obiena quenched the thirst of Philippine observe and subject for a podium end in these Video games for almost three many years.

Elma Muros-Posadas was the final Filipino who nailed a medal in Asiad athletics when she pocketed the bronze within the girls’s lengthy bounce in 1994 Hiroshima. The final gold medal was courtesy of Lydia de Vega in 1989 Seoul.



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Earlier than coming over to this Chinese language info know-how hub as Staff Philippines’ flag-bearer throughout the opening ceremony final week, Obiena once more positioned second to Duplantis within the Diamond League finals in Oregon.

Obiena’s gold medal will shut out a season loaded with success, earlier than implementing a complete coaching plan that can zero in on that gold medal within the Paris Summer season Video games starting January.



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