News17 Nov 2016

Stefanidi to face Morris in New York


Ekaterini Stefanidi at the 2016 Millrose Games (© Kirby Lee)

Ekaterini Stefanidi of Greece and Sandi Morris of the US, the Olympic pole vault gold and silver medallists, will square off at the 110th Millrose Games in New York on 11 February, organisers have announced.

In their fierce battle in Rio, both sailed over 4.85m, but Stefanidi took the gold on countback.

After the Games, Morris became just the third woman to clear 5.00m or better when she topped that landmark height at the Van Damme Memorial in September, the final meeting of the 2016 IAAF Diamond League series. Only her compatriot and world indoor record-holder Jenn Suhr and world record-holder Yelena Isinbayeva are ahead of her on the world all-time list.

Stefanidi was the world U18 champion in 2005, and has gradually evolved into one of her discipline's most consistent big meet competitors. The silver medallist at both the 2014 European Championships outdoors and 2015 indoors, she moved up a notch in Amsterdam in July to claim continental gold. Earlier this year she took bronze at the World Indoor Championships in Portland and captured the Diamond Race in the event.

The two battled at the New York meeting last year, with Stefanidi prevailing at 4.90m, a lifetime best.

Morris finished third at that competition, and went on to take silver in Portland.

Organisers for the IAAF