SPLIT, Croatia, (Reuters) – World high jump champion Blanka Vlasic will defend her title despite a hamstring injury which nearly forced her to pull out of the upcoming world championships in the South Korean city of Daegu, she said yesterday.
“A few days ago I lasted only 24 attempts in practice and decided to pull out of the world championships, but I could only live with my decision for 12 hours,” Vlasic told a news conference in her home town.
“I changed my mind; I am going to the worlds and I will either win or fall on my sword,” she said.
The 27-year-old Vlasic won the 2007 world gold medal in Osaka and repeated the feat two years later in Berlin, while she also captured the 2010 European title in Barcelona.
She won the silver medal at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and set a personal best of 2.08 cm in Zagreb in 2009, one centimetre short of the world record set by Bulgaria’s Stefka Kostadinova at the 1987 world championships in Rome.
Vlasic, who has struggled to produce her best form this season, said she was determined to battle through the pain in her bid to get a hat-trick of world titles.