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Australian Eleanor Patterson Claims Gold for High Jump

By: Amanda Yang

Eleanor Patterson, who is 26 years old, has made a historic high jump and has become the first Aussie to win the women’s high jump gold at the World Athletics Championship.

She got a personal best jump of 2.02 meters during the Championship in Oregon. “I’m actually, honestly in disbelief,” Patterson said. “It’s crazy to think, I’m going to be shaking my head in disbelief for the whole week, month, year, who knows? I didn’t make it easy for myself. The caliber of women I was up against was phenomenal and they were clearing everything for the first time, they were doing amazing things.”

Patterson almost lost her chance when she missed 1.98m twice. But she came back, clearing 2.00m on her second attempt before producing the best leap of her life, going over 2.02m. That historic jump was too much for the favorite, Ukraine’s Yaroslava Mahuchikh, who botched her first attempt at 2.02m. When both missed all three attempts at 2.04m, the gold was the Australian’s.

Australia’s Olympic silver medal holder Nicola Olyslagers finished fifth place, clearing 1.96m before flunking out at 1.98m.

Patterson first rose to fame at the 2014 Commonwealth Games as an 18-year-old who combined her school studies and winning a gold medal in Glasgow, a city in Scotland. In 2015, she made it to the World Championships final. Patterson was the first Australian woman to do so— and finished eighth.

Her Olympic presentation in Rio ended in ruin after she failed to get out of the qualifying rounds.

As Patterson's world started to collapse, she made a final effort to try for the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, a city in Australia, but she missed selection. She then departed from this sport, until Australia’s leading high jump coach, Alex Stewart, called her in 2019.

Patterson packed up her life and went to work with Stewart, and since then, she has been rediscovering and going back to her best work, landing fifth at the Tokyo Olympics, and taking silver at the World Athletics Indoor Championships earlier this year.

Patterson’s World Championship victory now makes her expected to win in the Birmingham Commonwealth Games, which open on July 28.

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