Preview: Lavillenie and Bayer aim for a hat-trick of titles | 26.02.2013
|European season-leader Aleksey Dmitrik of Russia
is likely to face a stiff challenge from European
outdoor champion Robbie Grabarz of Great Britain.
Men's high jump:
In the absence of Russia's Olympic champion Ivan Ukhov, the 2009 and 2011 champion, his countryman Aleksey Dmitrik will start favourite to land gold. The 28-year-old leads the 2013 European rankings with a best of 2.36m and will hope to improve upon the silver medal he won at these championships in Torino four years ago. He has won four of his six competitions this season, placed second in the other two and will be the man to beat in Göteborg.
His main opposition could be Great Britain's Robbie Grabarz (2.31m), the reigning European outdoor champion. The Olympic bronze has twice been beaten by Dmitrik this season but should not be underestimated.
Silvano Chesani emerged as a potential medallist in Göteborg following his national record 2.33m at the Italian Championships. Meanwhile, his fellow countryman Gianmarco Tamberi (2.30m) could also be in the mix.
The Russian squad is bolstered by the presence of Sergey Mudrov, the former European junior champion, who set a personal best of 2.34m to land the national title. Dimtrii Semenov (2.30m) is the third Russian competing. Vastly experienced Czech Jaroslav Baba (2.30m), the 2011 European indoor silver medallist and 2004 Olympic bronze medallist is another more than capable of climbing the podium. Look out too for Greek Konstadinos Baniotis (2.30m), who finished fourth at the 2012 World Indoor Championships.
Men's pole vault:
|French pole vault super star Renaud Lavillenie.
The French vaulter, who landed both the World Indoor and Olympic titles to his glittering CV in 2012, has a perfect eight out of eight record this indoor season. He boasts the world leading mark of 5.94m and to further demonstrate his superiority he also holds five out of the seven best vaults in the world this year.
His main opposition should come from Bjorn Otto, the man who holds the other two of the top seven marks in the world this year. The German champion had to settle for silver behind Lavillenie at both the World Indoors and Olympic Games last summer. However, with a pair of impressive 5.90m vaults behind him this winter the 35-year-old veteran should not be discounted.
His countrymen Raphael Holzdeppe (5.82m), the 2012 Olympic and European bronze medallist and Malte Mohr (5.80m), the 2011 European Indoor bronze medallist are also entered and could come into the medal equation. Konstadinos Filippidis, the fourth placer at the 2012 World Indoor Championships, who set a Greek record 5.83m in Linz in January is another with medal potential. Olympic fifth placer Steve Lewis (5.62m) of Great Britain and Czech national record holder Jan Kudlicka (5.77m) are also potential contenders.
Men's long jump:
One of the host nation's great hopes to prosper in Göteborg is European outdoor bronze medallist Michel Torneus. The 26-year-old has been in outstanding shape this winter, landing the Swedish title with 8.15m before leaping out some 0.05 further in his final pre-championships outing in Stockholm to set a national record.
|Two-time European indoor long jump champion
Sebastian Bayer of Germany.
The twin German threat should also not be underestimated. European record holder Sebastian Bayer will be hoping to create history and secure a hat-trick of European Indoor titles in the men's long jump. Bayer has not yet been at his best this season, but a respectable season's best of 7.97m to finish runner-up at his national championships suggests he is rounding into better shape.
His compatriot Christian Reif (8.06m), the 2010 European outdoor champion,
boasts a 100 per cent record this winter and he too will be expected to mount a powerful challenge. Experienced Greek Louis Tsatoumas (8.08m), a silver medallist in the 2007 European Indoors, is also entered. Other names to keep a close eye on include; Tsatoumas' countryman and Greek champion Yeoryios Tsakonas (8.15m), Finnish record holder Eero Haapala (8.11m) and 2010 European outdoor bronze medallist Chris Tomlinson (7.88m) of Great Britain.
Men's triple jump:
At the last edition of the European indoors in Paris two year's ago the men's triple jump provided the championship highlight as Teddy Tamgho bounded out to a new world record en route to gold. Tamgho will not be in Göteborg to defend his title and in his absence Marian Oprea will be keen to complete the full set of medals at these championships. The world leader with a best of 17.17m won a European indoor silver some 11 years ago before winning bronze in Paris – behind Tamgho. Now aged 30 victory would secure the Romanian his first major senior title.
Italy's European outdoor champion Fabrizio Donato was a late withdrawal but in his absence his countryman Daniele Greco the Olympic Games fourth-placer should also contend. Greco landed the Italian title with a best leap of 17.07m in his one solitary competition this winter – a performance which ranks him second in the world lists.
Flying the flag for France is national champion Harold Correa (16.94m) and Benjamin Compaore (16.86m). Look out too for Russian champion Ruslan Samitov (17.06m) and Dimitrios Tsiamis (16.98m) of Greece.
Ralf Bartels will be seeking to become the first man to mount a successful defence of this title since Ukrainian Aleksandr Bagach secured back-to-back gold medals 19 years ago. The 35-year-old German is a consummate championship performer, although with a best of 20.08m this season (he has won five from seven competitions) he is some way short of his lifetime best of 21.44m.
Maksim Sidorov of Russia, the bronze medallist behind Bartels two years ago, also competes and boasts a season's best 20.10m. The surprise European leader is Martin Stasek, whose personal best of 20.73m set when landing the Czech title marks him out as a genuine contender in Göteborg. Other names to watch include; 2012 European outdoor bronze medallist Asmir Kolasinac (20.54m) of Serbia, Sweden's former NCAA champion Leif Arrhenius (20.29m) and Czech Ladislav Prasil (20.51m). Former world junior champion Georgi Ivanov (20.59m) of Bulgaria and European Under-23 silver medallist Dmytro Savytskyy (20.27m) of Ukraine may also feature.