Japanese Olympian "Devastated" by Coverage of His Penis Pole Vault Mishap
Hiroki Ogita denied claims he had dislodged the bar with his personal pole, but later saw the funny side.
Japanese Olympic pole vaulter Hiroki Ogita was unimpressed that his performance in Rio, in which he appeared to dislodge the bar with his manhood, became a social media meme.
The 28-year-old athlete refuted claims that his own pole knocked the bar off during his attempt at 5.3 meters, complaining at his treatment at the hands of the "foreign media."
"It's one thing if it was true, but I have to say I'm pretty devastated that they'd go so far to make something up to mock and ridicule me so much," tweeted Ogita.
He then urged his new found social media fans to take a real interest in his sport.
"It doesn't matter if you do it for a joke or whatever, I ask you to go and watch an actual game at a stadium for once. I hope you appreciate, even a bit, what a great sport pole vaulting is," he added.
The vaulter had cleared the bar on the way up but then hit it with his shins and thighs on the way down, before apparently making contact with the contents of his shorts. The bar had clearly been dislodged by his legs and appeared to be already on its way off its mountings.
Undeterred, Ogita cleared the height on his next attempt but crashed out in 21st place, with a best jump of 5.45 meters, well below his personal best. The event was won by Brazil's Thiago Braz da Silva with an Olympic record of 6.03 meters.
Following tweets of support from Japanese fans who assured him the coverage had been light-hearted rather than critical, Ogita tweeted in Japanese, "Watching it again, I have to say myself it's pretty funny,” ending his message with the kanji character for 'laugh', the local equivalent of LOL.