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Wednesday, 27 September, 2000, 13:34 GMT 14:34 UK
Bubka fails to reach final
Sergei Bubka in action
Bubka was unable to rediscover his vintage form
World pole vault record holder Sergei Bubka and Olympic champion Jean Galfione both failed to qualify for the Olympic men's final, as did British hope Kevin Hughes.

Thirty-six-year-old Bubka, increasingly injury-prone in recent years, did not enter the qualifying round until 3 hours into the competition and failed three times at 5.70 metres.

After generous applause from a crowd privileged to watch the greatest pole vaulter in history, Bubka began but did not complete the first of his three attempts.

On his second attempt his approach looked laboured and, although he rose above the bar, he brought it down with his body.

His third attempt also brought down the bar and Bubka left an Olympic arena for the last time.

Galfione fared even worse. After clearing the bar first time at 5.40 and 5.55, he failed with his three attempts at 5.65.

Galfione has struggled with injury all season and underwent surgery on a collapsed lung suffered during an interclub competition in Paris in May this year.

World records

Bubka set 17 world records including the first vault above six metres. He won six world titles in a row but had a chequered Olympic career.

He was denied the chance of competing at the 1984 Los Angeles Games because of a boycott by the Soviet Union and its allies.

In 1988 he won his only Olympic gold in Seoul with his final attempt. Four years later in Barcelona he failed to record a height in the final and at the 1996 Atlanta Games he withdrew from the final because of an inflamed right Achilles.

Jean Galfione
Galfione failed to repeat his Atlanta feats
After a late start this season because of further injury problems, Bubka had a miserable European season, consistently failing to make his opening height.

He has always wanted to add a further Olympic gold to his collection and said before the Games began that Sydney would be his final major competition.

Meanwhile, Kevin Hughes cleared 5.55 but failed three times at 5.65.

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See also:

11 Sep 00 |  Athletics-Field
Galfione fit for pole vault defence
07 Aug 00 |  Athletics
Bubka upbeat despite setbacks
10 Aug 00 |  Athletics-Field
Bubka confirms Sydney farewell
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