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Poles apart: 'The only person who can beat me is myself,' says Yelena Isinbayeva

The Russian queen of track and field is very confident going in to London 2012.

Isinbayeva bites her gold medal during the World Indoor Athletics Championships in Istanbul earlier this year.
Isinbayeva bites her gold medal during the World Indoor Athletics Championships in Istanbul earlier this year.
Image: Matt Dunham/AP/Press Association Images

TWO-TIME REIGNING Olympic pole vault champion Yelena Isinbayeva is not lacking in confidence ahead of this year’s London Olympics.

The Russian has declared it will be ‘almost impossible’ for her to miss out on a third successive Olympic gold medal.

“In London, my main competitor will be myself, because I know how high I can jump and I know that height is almost impossible for my rivals,” Isinbayeva said, adding: ”I am not worrying about the Olympics.”

While the 29-year-old plans to retire in two years, she still hopes to better former Ukrainian pole vaulter Sergey Bubka’s record of 35 world records.

Isinbayeva has broken the world record (indoor and outdoor) on 28 occasions and is the current record holder in the women’s event with a mark of 5.06 metres, but believes she can take that up to at least 5.10m.

“It was my goal from the beginning to set up 36 world records,” the Russian said.

“I would like to make one more than Sergey did so, yes, it is still in my mind and now I feel that I can achieve it.”

Isinbayeva has also won two outdoor world championships and four indoor world championships and is in great form heading into the Olympics in July and August.

“My victory in the World Indoor Championship in Istanbul gives me more confidence for the Olympic Games in London and my indoor world record in Stockholm brings me back on top, so I am again number one in the ranking,” Isinbayeva said.

“It’s such a great feeling to come back to the same level as I was before.”

With just 100 days to go until the 2012 Olympic Games, Irish athletes are on their marks

Is that a photoshop? Your impressive public relations image of the day…

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About the author:

Steven O'Rourke

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