06 August, 2019

How high will Lasitskene set the bar this year ?

Mariya Lasitskene has been dominating the High Jump for quite some years, first as Mariya Kuchina and now as Mariya Lasitskene. She adopted that name after marrying Russian sports journalist Vladas Lasitskas. Since 2014 she has won the Diamond League Trophy three times. Will the Russian, who competes as an Authorized Neutral Athlete, be able to shine again this year at the IAAF Diamond League Final in Brussels ?

The reigning World and European High Jump champion can win her fourth Diamond League Trophy in Brussels. This year she has already won every IAAF Diamond League meeting that she competed at. Lasitskene was the best in Stockholm, in Oslo, in Eugene, in Lausanne and in Monaco and qualified early for the High Jump Final in Brussels. With a mark of 2,06m she also owns the World Leading Performance of 2019. Lasitskene has good memories of the AG Memorial Van Damme. Two years ago she took victory in the King Baudouin Stadium when she crossed a bar at 2,02m.

Lasitskene started her career as Mariya Kuchina. As a youngster she was considered a huge talent and her name and fame spreaded across the athletics community. In 2009 she finished second at the World Youth Championships with a personal best of 1,85m. It earned her a silver medal behind Italian Alessia Trost.

Lasitskene made a major breakthrough in 2014 by winning gold at the World Indoor Championships, winning silver at the European Championships and with her first win of the IAAF Diamond League Trophy. One year later, she confirmed her status by winning gold at the European Indoor Championships and her first title at the World Championships. In Beijing she took gold by clearing 2,01m. She again took victory at the 2017 World Championships in London while crossing 2,03m.

Last summer Lasitskene crowned herself for the first time as the European High Jump Champion. In Berlin Lasitskene took her first European title with a modest effort of 2,00m. At least as impressive as all those titles is her winstreak of 45 competitions between 1 July 2016 and 30 June 2018. Actually Lasitskene remains undefeated for 17 competitions in a row and her winstreak has not yet come an end ...