American Sam Kendricks capped his memorable, unbeaten season by wining the pole vault at the World Championships on Tuesday as the title once again eluded world record holder and former Olympic champion Renaud Lavillenie.
Kendricks, a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army reserve, cleared 5.95 meters while Poland's Piotr Lisek took the silver and Lavillenie had to be content with a fourth world bronze despite producing his best leap of the season.
The 24-year-old, who barely picked his pole for five months during the autumn and winter while on active duty, failed his first two attempts at 5.95 before clearing the third to a huge roar.
Lavillenie, unable to start training until May because of a foot injury, has been short of confidence and form all season and has failed to register a win in five appearances on the Diamond League circuit.
He had one failure and skipped two rounds before reaching 5.95 meters where he was agonizingly close on his second attempt, clearing the bar but nudging it on the way down.
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