Pole vaulter EJ Obiena (PNA file photo)

MANILA — Filipino pole vaulter EJ Obiena bagged his first indoor gold for 2023 after ruling the Perche En Or event early Sunday (Philippine Time) in Roubaix, France.

Obiena beat China's Yao Jie for the top prize after clearing 5.82 meters on his first try. Obiena tried but failed to clear 5.9.

Yao who settled for silver has set his new personal best when he cleared 5.75 meters.

Obiena could see Yao again in Kazakhstan as the world number three is set to compete there for the Asian Indoor Athletics Championships next month.
Meanwhile, host country France assured itself of a podium finish as three Frenchmen --Ethan Cormont, Robin EMig and Mathieu Collet-- all cleared a maximum of 5.65 meters and tied for the third spot.

After the countback was made, Cormont bagged the bronze medal. (PNA)