Hooker Wins Bronze in Valencia

Athletics | Published: Mon 10 March 2008

WAIS Pole Vault star Steve Hooker has stepped up his competitive return from injury with a Bronze medal at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Valencia, Spain.

Hooker who has booked his place at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing took out the National title in Brisbane just last week and led the field early after clearing jumps of 5.55m, 5.70m and 5.80m.

Russian Evgeniy Lukyanenko eventually claimed Gold after increasing his personal best to 5.90m, edging out defending champion Brad Walker of the USA who posted a best of 5.85m.

Hooker was unlucky after failing with a jump of 5.85 and then two at 5.90 with the second effort failing with a minimal touch removing the bar.

"I guess I feel it was a bit sweet and sour. I feel like I jumped really well but didn't have luck on my side," said Hooker.

"I'm happy to have won a medal though."

Hooker will continue preparations in Australia with his next competitive action not expected until mid-June.