A month after he made his mark on the Olympic stage, Filipino pole vaulter EJ Obiena is making headlines once again. Following his breakthrough performance in the recent Paris Diamond League, the 25-year old athlete climbed to the number five spot in the pole vault world rankings, as per GMA News Online. He won second place in the said competition.
“World No. 5. An ordinary man guided by God’s extraordinary grace. I may not meet the expectation of all, but I keep trying,” wrote Obiena on his Facebook post. “Thank you for all the prayers and support. The journey continues and I am proud to carry the nation with me. Getting there.”
Armand Duplantis of Sweden, who won gold at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic games, still retains the top spot worldwide. American pole vault aces Christopher Nielsen and Sam Kendricks are placed in second and third place, respectively. Currently, Renaud Lavillenie of France occupies the fourth spot, while Piotr Lisek of Poland follows Obiena at sixth place.
This isn’t the first time Obiena has made waves in the pole vaulting world since his Olympic stint. Just last week, he made history last week when he cleared the 5.91-meter mark, shattering the Philippine national record of 5.87 which he also set in Poland last June. The pole vaulting sensation finished second behind Duplantis, who registered 6.01 meters, while Kendricks settled for third place.
Aside from his P500,000 incentive for his run in the Tokyo Olympics, Obiena is set to receive another bonus of P250,000 from the Philippine Sports Commission for his record-breaking performance. By the looks of things, he’s not done making historic feats just yet. Fans can still expect a lot of great things from this Pinoy athlete.