EJ Obiena: Not thinking about 2024 Paris Olympics yet, but ‘I will be back’


Posted at Aug 04 2021 09:15 PM | Updated as of Aug 05 2021 07:38 AM

Olympic pole vaulter EJ Obiena on Wednesday night clarified his statement regarding his performance in Tokyo and his plans for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

"It was just reported that I am 'unsure' or 'not keen' on competing at the 2024 Paris Olympics," said Obiena in his Facebook post.

"My comments were taken out of context and have created an uncertainty and distraction to our country’s amazing Olympic performance."

Obiena, who made it to the Tokyo Olympics men's pole vault finals but finished 11th in the competition, he is not yet entertaining thoughts about the games in Paris.

He admitted being upset about his performance in Tokyo and wants to reflect on what happened first.

"I did not come to Tokyo 2020 Olympics to experience the Olympics. I did not come to just 'Make the final'. I came to win a medal for my country. This goal was not achieved," said Obiena.

"I hold myself to high standards. I am thus, understandably upset, disappointed, and reflecting so I can learn and improve myself."

Obiena said it was difficult to answer questions about Paris 2024 as his mind is still in the pole vault finals.

"As I am still digesting what happened yesterday , I ask I be given time to adequately reflect and learn. Asking about 2024 right now is not my first, second or even 10th thought. I am not thinking about 2024 right now. I am thinking about yesterday and gleaning all the learnings I can so I come back better," he said.

"My mistake was in trying to be accommodating to the press at a time that I am still distracted by what transpired in the pole vault final." 

What he is sure though is that he will be back.

"I still love the sport of pole vaulting. I still love representing my great country. I still love competing," he said. "I still know I can win." 

"You can draw your own conclusions from this. I will be back, and I will be back to win. But I want some time to digest the events of the past week, and especially the past 24 hours."


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