EJ upgrades to stiffer poles in time for Olympics
Ernest John Obiena will be very busy over the next two weeks trying to acquaint himself with a fresh set of competition poles that he intends to catapult him to a golden performance in the Tokyo Olympics.
The country’s pole vault king just capped a series of outdoor meets on Monday prior to the Olympics after placing fourth at the Bauhaus-Galan Wanda Diamond League Meeting in Stockholm, Sweden, where his biggest rivals in the podium participated.
“These competitions sharpen my competitive skills and I am able to improve myself. I’m going to make sure that in the Olympics, it will be the best shot that I can do,” said Obiena, who wants nothing less than an Olympic gold medal.
Now in transit going back to training camp in Formia, Italy, the 25-year-old Asian champion will wrap up his preparations and leave for the Japanese capital on July 22, at which by that time Obiena has already grown accustomed to using his brand-new sticks.
“He has to familiarize himself with the new equipment so that when the Olympics comes, everything will be natural for him,” said Emerson Obiena, EJ’s father and coach.
Team Obiena was hoping to receive the new poles—which are stiffer and long for higher clearance—prior to the final stretch of his outdoor campaign so he could get used to it during actual competition.
“He got word that the poles were delivered in Italy on July 2. He will use them in training as they make adjustments in his jump,” said Jeanette Obiena, EJ’s mother.
Obiena will fly directly to Tokyo on July 23. INQ
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