‘Something weird going on! Denise Lewis staggered only 1 athlete clears easy pole vault

Denise Lewis emotional at Katarina Johnson-Thompson's injury

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As the height of the bar in the pole vault final was adjusted to 4.70m, only one athlete was able to clear the height. Anzhelika Sidorova was leading the event with Team GB athlete Holly Bradshaw in the top four. Reflecting on the event, Hazel asked Denise, Michael Johnson and Jessica Ennis-Hill for their opinion on the struggle with the pole vault.

“Really interesting, if not unpredictable pole vault final and with that, she’ll be getting her head together and with all of these failings, it’s imperative she gets that second clearance,” Hazel remarked addressing Holly’s performance.

Denise replied: “She needs that second clearance at 4.70m but she needs to keep her head in the game.

“There’s carnage going on all around her and goodness knows what it feels like to be a coach at that moment because these athletes are well capable of clearing this height but it just seems to be something weird going on.”

Jessica added: “It’s incredible to see. I think pole vault is massively driven by rhythm and time isn’t it?

“You often enter competitions, I know I’ve in competitions with the high jump where the rhythm’s just not quite there.

“Perhaps we’re seeing that with a few of the women today in the pole vault.”

“Four women in second place Michael, she’s one of them who had an earlier clearance first time. It’s so important you stay in that group at least,’ Hazel continued.

Michael replied: “Yeah definitely but I wonder is there something about the conditions or the environment that might cause everyone’s rhythm to be off.

“That’s what we’ve seen at the beginning of this pole vault with the big names.”

Jessica later added: “It may be to do with the track but they’ve obviously qualified so they have experience of the speed of the track.

“But then again, maybe it goes back to not being able to do as many competitions as you would have liked to have done in the season.

“It is a rhythm event, it’s feeling the timing of getting the height above the bar.

“A lot of the women have got great height but the timing is just wrong with the position they are coming down off the bar.”

More to follow…

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