Russian clears world lead and almost breaks high jump world record
Ivan Ukhov tonight proved once again that when it comes to indoor high jumping, he is on a different level. The Russian dominated the competition in Hustopece, jumping a world leading 2.38m and having a seriously close crack at the world indoor record.
Five men were left in as the bar moved up to 2.30m, a height which Ukhov made look like a warm-up jump. Youngster Sergey Mudrov and Commonwealth champion Donald Thomas both failed at this height, but two other Russians – Aleksey Dmitrik and European champion Aleksandr Shustov – cleared it to remain in the competition.
Ukhov passed the next height, while Dmitrik cleared it and Shustov failed. Dmitrik did not last any longer though, which left Ukhov to compete pressure-free as he sailed over 2.34m on his first attempt.
After a near-miss at a meeting record 2.38m on his first attempt, Ukhov then nailed it on his second try with room to spare. The 24-year-old moved the bar straight up to a would-be world indoor record height of 2.44m. His first two attempts in particular were extremely close, but tonight was not meant to be a record-breaking one.
Russian jumpers cleaned up in the women’s competition too. Mariya Kuchina, the 18-year-old who recently set a world junior indoor best, was unable to improve on her mark from three days ago and had to settle for second place. Team mate Svetlana Shkolina won with 1.96m to Kuchina’s 1.94m, as Israel’s Danielle Frenkel set a national record of 1.90m in third.
2004 Olympic champion Yelena Slesarenko continued her comeback from injury with a 1.87m clearance in fourth, while European silver medallist Emma Green from Sweden withdrew from the competition after picking up an injury in warm up.
1 Ivan Ukhov (RUS) 2.38m
2 Aleksey Dmitrik (RUS) 2.32m
3 Aleksandr Shustov (RUS) 2.30m
4 Sergey Mudrov (RUS) 2.27m
5 Donald Thomas (BAH) 2.27m
6 Trevor Barry (BAH) 2.24m
6 Jaroslav Baba (CZE) 2.24m
8 Viktor Ninov (BUL) 2.24m
1 Svetlena Shkolina (RUS) 1.96m
2 Mariya Kuchina (RUS) 1.94m
3 Danielle Frenkel (ISR) 1.90m NR
4 Ana Šimic (CRO) 1.87m
4 Yelena Slesarenko (RUS) 1.87m
6 Iva Strakova (CZE) 1.87m