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Posted: January 29, 2009  :

(TPR) Athletics: Isinbayeva Joins Star-Studded Cast In Prague

From Bob Ramsak
© 2008 TRACK PROFILE Report, all rights reserved

Yelena Isinbayeva is the latest star confirmed for Prague 2009, the inaugural edition of indoor international meet scheduled for Feb. 26 in the Czech capital.

"I'm really looking forward to come and break some records," said Isinbayeva, the reigning Olympic, World and European champion. "When everything goes well it could be close to five metres."

Isinbayeva, 26, has amassed 24 world records in her career, and expectations are high that she’ll add to that total during her abbreviated indoor season this winter. Her current indoor mark stands at 4.95m [16-2 ¾ ], although she's gone considerably higher outdoors, most recently at the Olympic Games in Beijing where she soared 5.05m [16-6 ¾ ], breaking the world record for the second consecutive Olympics.

Isinbayeva is expected to make her indoor debut at the Malmo Indoor Gala in Sweden on Feb. 3, and will also compete at the Pole Vault Stars competition in Donetsk, Ukraine, on Feb. 14. She has already announced that she will not be defending her European indoor title in Turin, Italy, in March, choosing instead to provide a big meet opportunity for another Russian teammate.

Previously announced for the meet, set for Prague’s O2 Arena with a capacity of 15,000, are 110m world record holder and Olympic champion Dayron Robles of Cuba, and Olympic 100m hurdles champion Dawn Harper of the U.S. who will contest the 60m hurdles; Croatia’s Blanka Vlasic in the high jump; world indoor champion Abubaker Kaki of Sudan in the 800m; and 2008 revelation Pamela Jelimo, who is planning an assault on the world indoor 1000m record. That mark of 2:30.94 set by Maria Mutola, will celebrate its 10th anniversary the day before the meet.

ED. NOTE: TPR will provide pre- and post-meet coverage from Prague.

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