Riding the momentum that propelled her to the World title last summer in Daegu, Anna Chicherova cleared a Russian indoor record of 2.06m at the Hochsprung mit Musik competition in Arnstadt, Germany, on Saturday (5).
Sailing clear on her third try, Chicherova added two centimetres to the national record she co-held with Yelena Slesarenko, the 2004 Olympic champion, and moved up to equal third on the all-time world lists. Only Swede Kajsa Bergqvist, the World record holder at 2.08m from 2006, and former World record holder Heike Henkel of Germany, who topped 2.07m in 1992, have jumped higher indoors.
The 29-year-old Russian is now tied with Bulgarian Stefka Kostadinova (1988) and Croatia's Blanka Vlasic (2010) as the No. 3 jumper all-time indoors. The effort was also the second best ever for Chicherova, who cleared 2.07m at the national championships outdoors in Cheboksary last July, six weeks before she succeeded Vlasic as the World champion. Chicherova, who has cleared two metres in as many competitions this winter, topped 2.00m on her second try in Arnstadt and sailed clear at 2.03m on her first. She ended the competition after her 2.06m success.
Chicherova competes next at another high jump meeting in Banska Bystrica, Slovakia.
Irina Gordeyeva beat 2008 Olympic champion Tia Hellebaut on count back at 1.97m.
In the men's event, 2011 World championships silver medallist Aleksey Dmitrik beat World indoor champion Ivan Ukhov, also on count back, at 2.30m. Kostadinos Baniotis of Greece also topped a season's best of 2.30m for third with Germany's Raul Spank fourth at 2.27m.
Jesse Williams of the U.S., the reigning world champion outdoors, topped out at 2.24m to finish sixth.
Bob Ramsak for the IAAF