By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
EJ Obiena ended up in eighth place during the recently concluded 2022 Beijer Pole Vault Gala held in Uppsala, Sweden.
The Filipino pole vaulting sensation only managed to clear the 5.70-meter mark, the same height he achieved during his last stint at the ISTAF Indoor Berlin competition.
This is only Obiena’s second major professional tournament joined since getting an operation on his left knee due to meniscus issues.
Despite failing to qualify in the top three in both his Sweden and Germany stints, Obiena still has a lot of pro competitions to join as announced by his camp as part of his busy 2022 schedule.
Tokyo Olympics champion Armand Duplantis still reigned supreme and soared over the 6.04-meter mark but failed to go further for the world record.
KC Lightfoot of America placed behind Duplantis with 5.92 meters while Emmanouil Karalis of Greece had 5.81 meters.
Aside from his international pro stints, Obiena is also gearing up for national team duties after the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) already ensured his participation in the 2022 Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi, Vietnam.
After the Southeast Asian Games, Obiena will most likely represent the Philippines in the 2022 Asian Games hosted by Hangzhou, Zhejiang, China from September 10-25.