Pole vaulter Obiena sets new Southeast Asian record

Mark Escarlote on Sep 09, 2015 05:27 PM
Pole vaulter Obiena sets new Southeast Asian record
Filipino bet Ernest John Obiena (right) marks a new Southeast Asian standard in the pole vault event with a 5.40m. clearance. (Photo courtesy of pinoyathletics.info)

Olympic hopeful Ernest John Obiena shattered the Southeast Asian record in pole vault, clearing 5.40 meters in the Thailand Track and Field Open at Thamasat University in Thailand.

The 19-year-old Obiena, silver medalist in the Singapore Southeast Asian Games last June, broke his own mark of 5.30m. last May in Busan, Korea which is also the national and regional standard he shared with Thai pole vaulter Purahong Pooranot.

Pooranot cleared the old record in the SEA Games to beat Obiena, who then reached only a 5.25m. height.

The clearance is a good sign for Obiena, who trained in Italy under the tutelage of Vitaley Petrov, in his attempt to follow Filipino-American Eric Cray in the Rio Olympics next year. 

Obiena has until the first half of next year to reach the Olympic standard of 5.70m. for the Summer Games ticket.

Cray, double gold medal winner in the Singapore SEA Games, will compete in his pet event 400m. hurdles in the Rio Olympics.

Obiena is one of the three athletes sent by Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association in the meet with decathlete Junrey Vibas and 400m. run bet Ryan Bigyan.




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