LONDON (Reuters) - American pole vault world champion Sam Kendricks completed a double triumph over the weekend by winning at the inaugural World Cup in London 48 hours after Diamond League success in Rabat on Friday.
Many of his compatriots, like sprinters Christian Coleman, Ronnie Baker and Noah Lyles, chose to only compete in Morocco but the Mississippi native took the challenge to double up and help spearhead America’s 57-point win in the eight-nation event.
“I jumped in Rabat on Friday to secure my spot in the Diamond League then I came here but I am a professional jumper so I can do it and I’ve got to keep jumping,” said Kendricks.
“Then I came here and I had to really pull it together to jump well,” he added.
Kendricks was the only competitor to clear 5.83 — short of the 5.86 he managed in Rabat — and then failed three times in his attempt to set a personal best at 6.05, which would have been an American record.
“The 6.05m was doable so I wanted to compete and give it a try. I’m jumping here again next week which is great so I get to stay here all week and be a tourist - after I’ve had some sleep.”
Kendricks will return to the same London stadium next weekend for another Diamond League event.
“This is my window so I am aiming to jump high next weekend - I jumped with new poles today and it takes time to get used to them like swinging new golf clubs,” he said.
“I have lots of information to take away with me from today and think about all week long.”
Reporting by Neil Robinson; edting by Ken Ferris