Athletics

Mondo Duplantis extends winning streak at Lievin despite injury withdrawal

The Swedish pole vault world record holder notched his third-straight victory of 2021while Gudaf Tsegay smashes 1500m world indoor record

By Scott Bregman ·

Swedish pole vault world record holder Mondo Duplantis picked up another win Tuesday at Meeting Hauts-de-France Pas-de-Calais in Lievin, France to remain unbeaten this season.

Duplantis hasn't lost since the 2019 World Championships in Doha and won all 13 events that he competed in during 2020.

Though Duplantis’ win seemed routine on paper; in practice, it came under unusual circumstances. The 21-year-old vaulted only twice: clearing the bar in his first attempts at 5.6m and 5.86m, passing on 5.74m and 5.80m. Then, he retired due to injury when the bar was raised to 5.92m. Duplantis could be seen motioning with his hand at his neck, as if to indicate that he was done before walking over to speak with his mother, Helena, a former heptathlete.

Tuesday’s win is Duplantis’ third straight in 2021 after victories at the ISTAF Indoor meet in Dusseldorf in late January and the Rouen 2021 Elite Tour meeting on Feb. 6.

The men’s pole vault competition included a stacked field with reigning Olympic champion Thiago Braz of Brazil, 2012 Olympic champion Renaud Lavillenie of France, 2019 World pole vault champion Sam Kendricks of the United States, and world record holder Duplantis all participating.

American Chris Nilsen matched Duplantis’ 5.86m vault for second place, while Lavillenie was third at 5.80m. The Frenchman passed at 5.86m and failed three attempts at 5.92m.

Braz and Kendricks both missed at 5.74m and exited the competition. The event is part of the World Athletics Indoor Gold meeting series.

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Records fall in Lievin

Ethiopia's Gudaf Tsegay demolished the 1500m world indoor record set by Genzebe Dibaba by more than two seconds winning in 3:53.09.

The United States' Grant Holloway set an American record in the 60m hurdles. His 7:32 pace is the second best at the Lievin meeting. Holloway was the previous American record holder at 7:35.

In the women’s 3000m, it was a surprise win for 19-year-old Lemlem Hailu of Ethopia. Hailu set a meeting record at 8:32.55, dismissing Gabriella Szabo of Romania’s 1999 record of 8:34.09. In the men's event, it was nearly another record for Ethiopia's Getnet Wale clocked a 7:24.98, just .08 shy of the indoor record.

Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen also set a meeting record in the men’s 1500m, clocking a world-leading 3:31.80 time. It is the fifth fastest 1500m indoor time in history.

"I always want to run fast, but it was my first race in 2021... Today it was really easy," said Ingebrigsten, according to SuperSportcom

Meanwhile, Cuban Juan Miguel Echevarria also posted the year’s best result in the long jump at 8.25m.

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