Armand Duplantis wins in Liévin but misses world record
Armand Duplantis came agonisingly close to setting a third pole vault world record in the span of just 11 days, but ultimately settled for a win on the World Athletics Indoor Tour.
The American-born Swede, who cleared 6.18 metres on Saturday (15 February) in Glasgow, nearly added a centimetre to his best but knocked the bar over with his shin on his second attempt at 6.19m in Liévin, France.
Duplantis was in scintillating form in France, easily clearing the bar at 5.60m, 5.80m, 5.90m, and 6.07m on his first try at each of those heights. However, he had to be content with the last of those heights as his final result, which was enough to win the meet.
Nearest rival Sam Kendricks could only clear 5.90m, doing so on his third and final attempt. He had one miss at 5.95m before choosing to retire from the competition.
World Record watch
With Duplantis having broken the World Record twice in the last 11 days, everyone in a sell-out 5,000-strong crowd in northeastern France was hoping for a repeat.
But, as the 20-year-old himself pointed out after his second record-breaking feat on Saturday, "it's unfair to think I'll break it every time I compete.
"Winning is always the goal, then if I have the energy left I’ll crank it up a bit.”
Here, he had the win in the bag early with his easy clearance at 6.07m, and he clearly had the energy to "crank it up", although it wasn't to be.
The 2020 World Indoor Tour ends in Madrid, Spain, on Friday (21 February).
Duplantis is not scheduled to participate, having already won the overall pole vault title.