Commonwealth Games: Eliza McCartney disappointed not to win gold in pole vault final

  • 14/04/2018

Kiwi pole vaulter and Commonwealth Games gold-medal favourite Eliza McCartney was her usual ebullient self after claiming silver, but admits to feeling a 'tinge' of disappointment in her display.  

The 21-year-old McCartney cruised over 4.70 metres on the Gold Coast but was shocked by Canada's Alysha Newman, who cleared a Games-record 4.75m.

McCartney then failed to match Newman's effort before taking two cracks at 4.80m, both of which were unsuccessful.

The 2016 Rio Olympic bronze-medallist - a recent fourth at the world indoor championships - was well off her personal best of 4.82m.            

She said that disappointed her more than missing a gold medal.               

"The little tinge of disappointment comes from those last attempts at 4.80m, I certainly think I had the height and certainly know I could clear those heights, so it was a little disappointing I couldn't pull it out," McCartney said.    

"But I gave the best I had.           

"Regardless of what she jumped, I was still focusing on the bigger heights I wanted to get - if I jumped 4.80-85-90m, I wouldn't have cared if I came second." 

In what was a tit-for-tat battle, McCartney kept her powder dry early to take a first attempt at 4.55m, clearing without fuss, before doing the same at what was a Games-record height of 4.65m.    

Newman then emerged from the pack, including Australian Nina Kennedy and Englishwoman Holly Bradshaw, to serve as McCartney's chief rival.

The 23-year-old Ontario native - a frequent training partner of McCartney - then writhed over the bar to condemn the Aucklander to silver.      

Bronze went to Kennedy, while Kiwi prodigy Olivia McTaggart came ninth, clearing 4.30m but failing thrice to get over 4.40m. 

McCartney said she wasn't shocked by Newman's efforts.          

She felt she'd learn plenty from the experience - and her first meet using a longer and more rigid pole - to take into future competition.     

"I'm young and hopefully have another 10 years," McCartney said.         

"I would've been really happy with 4.80m.

"The stiffer the pole, you've got to be able to put more energy in to get over the pole and then the bar - I was doing that but just needed that little more oomph."

NZN