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Aussie Eleanor Patterson, the new high jump world champion

By: Emma Ke

The World Athletics Championship has ended, but the events held there will never be forgotten. The women’s high jump event was one of the most memorable, though, because 26-year-old Australian Eleanor Patterson jumped 2.02 meters (6 ft 7.5 in) to win the event.

“It’s crazy, 2.02, I don’t know what happened,” Patterson says.

Born in Leongatha, Victoria, Patterson has competed in high jump events since she was young. This eventually led her to be the runner-up at the national junior championships. Since then, her career has been full of success, as shown at her first international event, the 2013 World Youth Championships in Athletics, where she won gold. She continued to ruthlessly break records, setting a new Australian record in 2020 by jumping 1.99m, and then a new Oceania Indoor record at 2.00m in 2022.

Now Patterson has brought home gold with her new personal record of 2.02 meters, which equals the Oceania record.

“So many girls went two meters, it was a phenomenal performance from everyone,” she said. “I’m so thrilled to clear 2.02. I’m proud of myself and my team.”

The competition was fierce though, as many talented women participated, including the “favorite” to win, Ukraine’s Yaroslava Mahuchikh. With her rival, three-time world champion Maria Lasitskene, unable to participate because of the Russian-Ukrainian war, Mahuchikh's victory was anticipated by many. But Mahuchikh couldn’t beat Patterson in the end, and needed one more try to score 2.02, resulting in a second-place finish.

“I’m overjoyed I could even clear that height. I knew it was within me but to bring it out tonight under such pressure, I’m just so proud of myself,” said Patterson.

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